Editor shares basketball pre-season standings
Jordan Nogg, Sports J Editor
November 30, 2022
- Bellevue West (25-4): Bellevue West lost in the state finals to Millard North last season. The T-Birds will return the consensus top player in the state, Josiah Dotzler. Dotzler committed to the hometown Creighton Bluejays on August 1st. Josiah’s brother Josh, was a four-year Bluejay from 2005-2009. The Thunderbirds obviously will miss William Kyle III, who is averaging double-digit points in his freshman year at South Dakota State this season, but we will see gaps filled by 6’6 junior Jacob Arop. Look for Eldon Turner and Jaden Jackson to also heavily contribute.
- Westside (24-3): Westside fell to their rival Creighton Prep in the first round of the state tournament last season. The Warriors lost four starters in Chandler Meeks, Reggie Thomas, Logan Wilson, and Payson Gillespie. It’s not panic mode though. Westside gets back Colorado Christian signee, Tate Odvody, who averaged 15 points per game last season. Juniors CJ Mitchell and Kevin Stubblefield will see a significant minute increase, both fresh off a great AAU season with ETG (Everything To Gain). Seniors Malik Crawford and Kevin Brown will round out the last two starting spots, who haven’t seen much varsity time.
- Gretna (19-7): The Dragons fell short last year against Millard North in the semifinals, but showed a lot of promise for the future. The duo of Landon Pokorski and Alex Wilcoxson will be one for all to watch. Pokorski averaged 17 points per game last year, and will look to establish himself as a top 2024 recruit in Nebraska.
- Millard North (26-2): The Mustangs suffered the same fate as Westside, losing Jasen Green (to Creighton), David Harmon, Nick Dolezal, and Jakson Page. Neal Mosser is the only returning starter to the reigning champs, widely known as one of the best three point shooters in the state. The Mustangs lost Isaiah McMorris to the transfer portal, but also made a splash in the portal for themselves, adding Mosser’s fellow ETG teammate, Caleb Steele (Homeschool). The Mustangs also added Jacob Martin, a skilled guard from Omaha South.
- Creighton Prep (18-8): The Junior Jays miss out on Luke Jungers (UNO) and Martel Evans, but return senior pair Joey Riechl and PJ Newbill. Emmett Knight should step into an extended role, and junior Dillon Claussen, who has seen crazy development over these past two years, could be a great glue guy for his last two seasons.
- Lincoln Southwest (16-8): The Silver Hawks will bring back one of the top players of the 2023 class, Rylan Smith. Smith averaged 11.8 PPG last season. They’ll also lean on Chuck Love Jr, son of former Husker WBB assistant, Chuck Love. Love Jr. is one of the most highly regarded 2025 players in the state, and holds offers from schools like Missouri State and UMKC.
- Lincoln Southeast (10-13): The Knights will return their leading scorer, Taye Moore. Paired with him, another 2025 prospect BJ Bradford, will look to increase his numbers, after leading the team in assists. The Knights could make some noise out of Class A.
- Papio South (16-8): The Titans will lose their first option, Daniel Brocaille, who averaged nearly 20 points a game last season. Bryson Bahl, who was just a freshman last year, will be back for the Titans after averaging 11 points a game in his first season.
- Omaha North (14-11): The Vikes will miss out on their 16 points per game scorer, Mason Strong. While that hurts, the Vikings could very possibly beat out their 14-11 record last year, under the lead of 2024 prospect Daleron Thomas. Thomas averaged nearly double-digits last season, and it’ll be interesting to see what he can do with more control of the team.
- Omaha Central (19-8): The Eagles are historically good. They had a somewhat early exit last season in the opening round against Gretna. Yes, they lost the great duo of Jayden Dawson and PJ Davis, but Central has a lot of under-the-radar guys like senior Junior Both and sophomore LC Doss.