Notebook: Bamba makes his jump

In our weekly Notebook feature, the national team explores creative and broad topics from the grassroots hoops realm.

Bamba’s intrigue difficult to miss

One of the most intriguing 2017 prospects I've seen this high school season is Mohamed Bamba.

Bamba, who stands 6-foot-10 and possesses a 7-foot-3 wingspan, has all the tools you look for in a young post player. He's long, mobile, athletic, has good post awareness and even has good form on his mid-range jump shot, which he shoots with confidence.

To be straightforward, Bamba appears to have some serious upside. It's still early with him obviously, but with his physical tools and the skills he's already developed, he's tracking as an elite type post prospect in the 2017 class.

While we haven't fully updated our 2017 top 50 and likely won't until the spring, but we did go ahead and slot Bamba at No. 11 overall in the sophomore class.

— Evan Daniels

Playoffs nearly here

Within most states or private leagues, the playoff rounds will begin by the middle of the month. The high school season typically wraps up prior to the end of the college year, with more time between games.

That said, look for some reputation-making performances to transpire over the next several weeks. It was around this time, in 2000, that freshman LeBron James led Akron (Ohio) St. Vincent-St. Mary to a state championship. Most players obviously won’t achieve quite that level of reputation, but the bottom line is that the cream rises to the top.

The most talent-laden states will feature some grueling battles in the course of crowning a champion. Southern California annually produces fireworks, as do Texas, Florida, Illinois, Indiana and others.

Clearly, our staff can’t be everywhere at once and it’s impossible to account for the nation’s disparate schools, leagues and levels, but between now and late March would be a great time to utilize a Google news search to see who has taken that next step as a prospect.

— Rob Harrington

Evan Daniels and Rob Harrington contributed to this report

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