2023 ARBY’S CLASSIC TOURNAMENT FIELD INCLUDES TWO PRE-SEASON TOP 25 TEAMS, FOUR DEFENDING STATE CHAMPS, SEVERAL DIVISION 1 PLAYERS
The 40th edition of the Arby’s Classic basketball tournament at Tennessee High’s Viking Hall will feature yet another tremendous field, as 10 teams from outside of Tennessee will be vying for the prestigious Arby’s title.
The 2023 tournament, which takes place Dec. 26-Dec. 30 will feature teams from New York, Washington D.C., Ohio, Florida, Kentucky, South Carolina, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and the Bahamas.
After a hugely successful 2022 tournament where six of the 18 teams were eventually crowned state champions, Arby’s Classic tournament director Richard Ensor feels this year’s field could be even better.
“We’ve got several teams coming this year who are either defending state champs or state runners-up,” he said. “A couple are pre-season top 25 teams, so I expect this year’s tournament to be one of our best yet. There are also some incredible players on these teams, some of whom have already committed to Division 1 schools.”
Teams from outside the area taking part in this year’s Classic are:
- Mentor (Ohio) 19-5
- Jackson-Reed (Washington D.C.) 28-5
- South Shore (New York) 18-4
- Mater Lakes Academy (Florida) 28-3 (2022 State Champions)
- Dorman (South Carolina) 29-2 (2022 State Champions)
- Kell (Georgia) 28-2 (2022 State Champions)
- Imhotep Institute (Pennsylvania) 30-3 (2022 State Champions)
- Harlen County (Kentucky) 27-6
- George Wythe (Virginia) 26-4 (2022 State Runner-up)
- Independence (Tennessee) 28-5 (2022 State Runner-up)
- Oak Ridge (Tennessee) 22-5
- Maryville (Tennessee) 15-13
- Tabernacle (Bahamas)
Both Jackson-Reed and Kell have been named pre-season top 25 teams for the 2023 season, while Imhotep finished the 2022 campaign as the No. 5 ranked team in the nation.
Local teams participating in the 2023 Arby’s Classic are Dobyns-Bennett (23-11), Daniel Boone (14-19), Greeneville (22-11), Sullivan East (11-17), and Tennessee High (28-8).
Players to watch include Imhotep’s Ahmad Nowell (6-4 guard), who has committed to Tennessee and is a Top 30 player, Kell’s Payton Marshall (6-11 center), who will play at Auburn, Jackson-Reed’s Rob Dockery (6-7 forward), who has committed to Texas A&M, Harlan County’s Trent Noah (6-7 guard), a candidate for player of the year in Kentucky after averaging 26.5 ppg in 2022, and South Shore’s Anthony Gilkes (6-6 guard), considered one of the Top 10 players in New York.