Noah Vonleh re-enters Class of 2013
Noah Vonleh, a blue-chip power forward in the Class of 2014, has decided to enter college with the Class of 2013 after all, shaking up the recruiting landscape by immediately jumping into the top-10 prospects of the current senior class.
Vonleh, who is entering his fourth year of high school at New Hampton boarding school in New Hampshire, announced his intent to reclassify and is working toward playing college basketball in the fall of 2013.
"I'm ready academically to go back up to 2013," Vonleh said. "I just have to change an English class and I'll be ready to graduate. I'm more mature as a basketball player and as a person.
"From a basketball standpoint, I'm working even harder and I'm ready to go to college. I have a better understanding of what it takes to be good and be a student of the game," added Vonleh, of Haverhill, Mass.
Vonleh, ranked as the No. 4 prospect by ESPN in the Class of 2014, was inserted into the current senior rankings at No. 7 overall.
"He's starting to move at a pace that no one has ever seen before," New Hampton coach Pete Hutchins said. "He's really buying into learning about the game instead of just always playing it."
The Class of 2013, with its lack of overall frontcourt depth, added a piece that will be coveted by most if not all of the elite programs. Vonleh's length, rebounding and overall skill set should allow him to play both the small and power forward positions.
"I'm going to try and make a list of 10-15 schools and see what schools have scholarships open for me in 2013 and see who wants to recruit me," Vonleh said.
When asked which programs were recruiting him the hardest, Vonleh said Indiana, North Carolina and Ohio State.
The move up a grade is not unprecedented. In June, ESPN 100 wing Wayne Selden (Boston, Mass./Tilton) opted to insert himself back into his original class and is a senior.
However, Vonleh is among the youngest of his 2013 peers. Top-ranked senior Jabari Parker (Chicago, Ill./Simeon) is younger than Vonleh. Parker and Aaron Gordon (San Jose, Calif./Bishop Mitty) are considered the youngest elite players of the group and Vonleh is sandwiched -- age-wise -- between the pair.
Reclassifying is a trend that had been gaining popularity since 2010. The movement has its roots in New England where many of the nation's elite prep school and postgraduate programs reside.
Nerlens Noel, Andre Drummond, Khem Birch and Selden all are either from New England or spent time in a New England prep school. Each reclassified early in their careers only to insert themselves back into their original classes.
Vonleh's movement back into the senior class also has ramifications for postseason All-Star games. Had he remained in the 2014 class, he would have been ineligible for the McDonald's All American game as a fifth-year senior.