Sierra Canyon High School in Chatsworth, California has turned into a fountain of talent the past few years. Ziaire Williams starred at Stanford and currently plays for the Memphis Grizzlies. Former Kentucky guard BJ Boston is finding his way on the Los Angeles Clippers. Amari Bailey, the second-ranked player in the Class of 2022, is heading to UCLA next season.
In addition, Bronny James is blossoming into a superstar right in front of our eyes and is already an ESPN favorite.
Another high-profile Trailblazer, Scotty Pippen Jr., son of Chicago Bulls great Scottie Pippen, is becoming a great in his own right at Vanderbilt.
Vanderbilt's Scotty Pippen Jr.
Coming out of high school, Scotty Jr. entertained offers from Colorado State, UC Davis, UC Santa Barbara, and Washington State prior to committing to Vanderbilt University. He signed with Vandy based on a good relationship with head coach Bryce Drew. Pippen upheld his pledge to Vandy despite Drew being let go two months after he committed and getting replaced by current head coach Jerry Stackhouse.
Pippen has become the undisputed star for the Vanderbilt Commodores men's basketball team over the past two years. The 6-foot-3 point guard started 31 of 32 games as a freshman, averaging 12 points, 2.8 rebounds, 3.6 assists, 1.1 steals, and 29.8 minutes per contest. The Los Angeles native was the team's third leading scorer behind sophomore Aaron Nesmith and junior Saben Lee. His performance earned him SEC All-Freshman Team honors, and it was only a glimpse of what was to come.
The point guard kicked his game into another gear as a sophomore. Last season, the NCAA basketball player emerged as Vandy's top offensive weapon and averaged 20.8 points, 2.8 rebounds, 4.9 assists and shot a resounding 85% from the free throw line.
Despite Pippen's individual success, Vandy struggled in the SEC, finishing with a 3-13 regular season record, but Pippen was named to the All-SEC First Team. A season averaging over 20 points allowed him to test the 2021 NBA Draft waters, too, but he retained his college eligibility and ultimately elected to return to Nashville for his junior year.
Pippen returned to an experienced Vanderbilt basketball team that included some new faces such as Minnesota transfer Liam Robbins and four-star recruit Shane Dezonie. He was also named the preseason SEC Player of the Year.
Individual accolades aside, Pippen returned to win against the likes of Kentucky, Tennessee, Ole Miss Georgia, Florida, Auburn, Mississippi State, Missouri, Texas A&M, LSU, Arkansas, Alabama and South Carolina.
The Vanderbilt star has shown the ability to score, distribute and lead. As one of the best players in all of college basketball, he has all the tools to succeed in the NBA like his father.
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