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Duke SF signee Cooper Flagg named Gatorade National Player of the Year

The hype surrounding Montverde (Fla.) Academy Five-Star Plus+ small forward and Duke signee Cooper Flagg continues to grow, as he added another major award to his mantle on Wednesday.

Flagg has been named the Gatorade National Player of the Year, beating out Five-Star Plus+ Rutgers signee Ace Bailey and Five-Star Plus+ Baylor commit VJ Edgecombe. The incoming Blue Devil joins the likes of LeBron James, Karl-Anthony Towns and Jayson Tatum as recipients of the award.

Earlier this month, Flagg was also named the Naismith National High School Boy’s Basketball Player of the Year. He is averaging 16.1 points, 7.6 rebounds and 3.9 assists per game for a Montverde Academy team that is 30-0 and will finish the 2023-24 season at the High School Nationals from April 4-6 in Brownsburg, Indiana.

The consensus No. 1 prospect in the 2025 class, Flagg reclassified this fall into 2024 and immediately took over as the top recruit in that class, too. He committed to Duke in November and signed with the Blue Devils as part of their top-rated recruiting class.

In the latest ESPN mock drafts for the 2025 NBA Draft, Flagg is projected as the No. 1 overall pick.

Cooper Flagg Bio

Flagg was a well-known name before he arrived on the high school scene, but he became the first-ever freshman to be selected as Maine’s Gatorade Player of the Year. He averaged 20.5 points, 10 rebounds, 6.2 assists, 3.7 steals and 3.7 blocks for Nokomis Regional. He transferred to basketball powerhouse Montverde Academy in Florida after his freshman season. Flagg was named the MVP of the 2023 Hoophall Classic after scoring 21 points with five steals, five rebounds and three assists in Montverde’s 85-63 victory over La Lumiere Academy. Flagg would go on to be named a semifinalist for the Naismith Prep Player of the Year Award. Flagg averaged 9.8 points, 5.2 rebounds, and three assists per game in his first season at Montverde, which firmly established him as the consensus No. 1 prospect in the 2024 recruiting class. Flagg is also a standout on the international stage.

In 2022, Flagg was named USA Basketball Male Athlete of the Year after his performance at the U17 World Cup. He was the youngest player to ever win the award. “I’m not sure there are any one-to-one comps for him. I think the way he protects the rim from the weak side changes any comps I could throw out there,” NBA draft expert Nathan Grubel said. “His block numbers are outrageous. I’d say he could become a very strong mix of Gordon Hayward and Andrei Kirilenko.” Flagg’s mother, Kelly, played basketball at Maine. He has a twin brother, Ace, who also plays basketball.

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