Okafor headlines Parade AAs

Prior to the internet, and before recruiting became a mainstream basketball topic, fans interested in the grassroots game starved for information. Enter the Parade All-American team, which presented at least a cursory annual look at some of the nation's best talent.

The publication released its 2014 list this weekend and named Scout.com's No. 1 senior, Jahlil Okafor, as its player of the year. No surprise there, and it balanced the ledger between Okafor and Chicago rival Cliff Alexander, who recently won the Naismith award.

To be honest, Parade has made some strange choices in recent years, combining elite prospects with some outside even a top 200 who simply poured in big stats. While that might sound fair on the surface, in most cases those players played against inferior competition or else accumulated those stats very inefficiently.

By and large, however, this year Parade chose blue-chippers. Familiar names in addition to Okafor and Alexander include Stanley Johnson, Justin Jackson, Joel Berry, Emmanuel Mudiay, Karl Towns, Trey Lyles, Kelly Oubre, Justise Winslow, Myles Turner and others.

There still were some strange choices, more in terms of exclusions than inclusions. Tyus Jones did not make the team, nor did Rashad Vaughn and other McDonald's All-Americans. A fewer lower or unranked players did make the squad, but nearly everyone on the team either has or will choose a major college program.

Here's a look at the complete team: Parade All-Americans

Scout Hoops Top Stories