High School Sports

DFW five-star named Gatorade Texas Boys Basketball Player of the Year. National next?

Five-star combo-guard RJ Hampton from Little Elm, Texas.
Five-star combo-guard RJ Hampton from Little Elm, Texas. USA Basketball/247Sports

Little Elm junior RJ Hampton, who is the top-ranked 2020 prospect in the state according to 247Sports, was named 2018-19 Gatorade Texas Boys Basketball Player of the Year on Friday, becoming the first Gatorade Texas Boys Basketball Player of the Year from his high school.

Hampton, a 5-star combo guard, joins an elite alumni association of past state boys basketball award winners, including former and current NBA stars Karl-Anthony Towns (2012-13, 2013-14), Dwight Howard (2003-04), Chris Bosh (2001-02), Paul Pierce (1994-95), Chauncey Billups (1993-94, 1994-95) and Jason Kidd (1991-92).

The 6-foot-6 Hampton averaged a Dallas-Fort Worth-leading 32 points along with 9.7 rebounds, 6.4 assists and 3.9 steals per game this past season as the Lobos finished 24-10 and reached the second round of the playoffs.

Hampton holds 17 offers from TCU, Texas, SMU, Kansas, Duke, Kentucky, Memphis, Baylor, Cal, Florida, Florida State, Houston, Oklahoma State, Mississippi State, LSU, UCLA and USC. He’s projected to commit to Duke, per 247Sports.

Hampton won gold medals with Team USA at the 16U FIBA World Cup in 2017 and at the 17U FIBA World Cup in 2018. The Texas Association of Basketball Coaches Class 5A Player of the Year in 2018, he concluded his junior year with 2,854 career points.

He is one of three finalists for the Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year Award. The other nominees are senior Memphis commit James Wiseman (Memphis, TN) and senior Arizona commit Nico Mannion (Phoenix, AZ).

The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, baseball, softball, and boys and girls track and field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport.

As a part of Gatorade’s cause marketing platform “Play it Forward,” Hampton also has the opportunity to award a $1,000 grant to a local or national youth sports organization of his choosing. He is also eligible to submit an essay to win one of twelve $10,000 spotlight grants for the organization of choice, which will be announced throughout the year.

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Born and raised in Hawaii, Brian Gosset graduated from Northern Arizona University with a degree in journalism before coming to Texas in 2014. He’s covered high school sports — yes, pretty much every high school sport — for the Star-Telegram ever since.