As the only Catholic school in Southern Nevada, with its beautiful 36 acre campus, you might forget that Las Vegas’ Bishop Gorman High School has become one of the preeminent sources of basketball talent in the entire country. Yet Gorman just keeps churning out quality players.
Gorman saw an exodus of D1 players two years ago, headlined by the 14th pick in the NBA Draft, Shabazz Muhammad. But they also sent other quality players to big time programs. Ben Carter picked Oregon, Rosco Allen picked Stanford, and Demetris Morant went with the hometown UNLV Runnin’ Rebels. That’s a big boost to west coast basketball, all from one school’s graduating class.
What might be more impressive than the abundance of talent Bishop Gorman has produced is the way head coach Grant Rice has dealt with losing that talent. A year after they went 28-4 and captured the state title behind Muhammad, Allen, Morant, and Carter, Rice led Gorman to another state title. And they went 29-3.
That’s a testament to Rice’s ability to create a sustainable basketball program, but it’s also an affirmation of the talent they continue to develop.
Perhaps no one embodies that idea as much as 2015 center Stephen Zimmerman. The 7 foot sophomore has emerged into one of the best players in the country, regardless of class. He combines a sweet shooting touch with the height and length to play around he basket, and is rapidly improving. There’s a reason that he’s being called the best player in his class.
Normally, a player like Zimmerman would be enough to carry a high school team to success. But the Gorman way has never been just about star players. Instead, the program has made a name for itself by developing all around teams that let the talents of multiple players emerge through the team concept. And last year was no exception.
Chase Jeter, a 6’8 forward with smooth moves around the basket, is considered a top 50 talent and continues to get better. He has the size and length to be effective down low, and with more seasoning he could become a very skilled power forward that will be sought after by college teams all over the country.
Rashad Muhammad, the younger brother of Shabazz, averaged 19 points per game and became one of the best scorers on the team, highlighted by a 29 point performance in the state semifinals against Hug High. Muhammad is committed to San Jose St University.
But Gorman’s wealth of talent goes even further. Trey Kennedy, a combo guard who has a knack for scoring, is committed to Southern Utah and drew interest from many other teams looking for guards in the 2013 class.
And Noah Robotham, a 2014 guard, is seeing interest from programs like Stanford, Harvard, BYU, and UNLV. Robotham is poised for big things as a senior.
With as much talent as Gorman returns next year, it won’t be a surprise to see them take another state title. But it might actually be more fun watching which players they develop into significant contributors. With Gorman’s track record under Rice, there’s no reason to think the Gaels will do anything but continue the long line of elite basketball players to come through the program.