Making our way west, time to focus on Topeka. There’s unquestionably one top dog in the Capital City. Ketraleus Aldridge Ketraleus Aldridge 6'4" | SF Highland Park | 2023 State KS had a huge junior year for Highland Park, then…
Making our way west, time to focus on Topeka.
There’s unquestionably one top dog in the Capital City.had a huge junior year for Highland Park, then hit the summer circuit and stirred up a lot of D1 college interest. He’s a man-child, runs like a freight train, can leap out of the gym and is skilled with the ball. He will be a highlight machine this season.
But there are some other seniors who will be big in Topeka this year. Here are six who will be in the spotlight (in alphabetical order):
Alexander has sort of flown under the radar the last couple of years, teaming with D1 recruit Elijah Brooks. But his 11 points and 4 assists per game were huge for a state-bound team. He’s a big, physical guard who bullies opponents, then shoots over them. He can really light it up from deep.
Alexander’s backcourt mate, Austin has been a big part of the Chargers’ back-to-back trips to 5A state. He’s a smooth ball handler who stays under control. He knew not to do too much. It was Elijah Brooks‘ team. But this year, the Chargers will be much more balanced, and Austin will have a chance to show how much he’s learned from two years of varsity. He averaged 10 points and 3 assists as a junior.
Bachelor did all he could for a Washburn Rural team that changed over a lot from the previous year. He impressed enough to start drawing college interest. He then played on a challenging level with Marcus Denmon over the summer, further adding to his game. He’s long for a shooting guard. He’s cerebral and experienced, having been in the Junior Blues’ rotation since his freshman year. He’s grown since then and will now have the size/athleticism advantage he hasn’t had the past three years.
Similar to Bachelor, Bonner (pictured) spent the past three years being somewhat undersized and challenged physically, playing against older competition. No longer. Bonner is now a well-built specimen who stands about 6-foot-3. He now overwhelms opponents on the dribble and in the paint. He still can drop bombs from deep, but his game has become well-rounded. He will be the unquestioned leader of the Vikings and will be called on to do a lot of everything.
There’s no question Otting is one of the top basketball players in the city. The question is, will he play basketball this season. He committed to play football at Notre Dame next season, and, like so many football recruits, he will have the option to leave high school early to jump start his football career. If Otting sticks around, he’s a crafty center who has a unique low post game. He uses his size and light feet to create shots around the goal. And no one is pushing this guy off the block.
Like Otting, Richardson will have some decisions to make this winter. He’s a big football recruit who still has to decide where he’ll be next year. If he decides to play another season, he will be arguably the fastest basketball player in the state. His size/speed/athleticism combination is rare, and he uses it to create transition opportunities and to terrorize opponents. He’s got good basketball skills to go with his physical tools.