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Oregon high school athletes choosing to play California Prep basketball

Some of southern Oregon's best basketball players are headed to sports academies in California to prepare for college basketball.

Posted: Dec 15, 2020 10:01 PM
Updated: Dec 15, 2020 10:08 PM

MEDFORD, Ore. — With high school sports seasons still uncertain in Oregon, players have been taking their destinies into their own hands. Some of the best headed to prep schools in California to give themselves the best chance to play at the next level.

The biggest local name to head south was Oregon-commit Nate Bittle. The Crater Comet announced earlier this year he would finish up his basketball career at Prolific Prep in California. But Bittle isn't the only one making the move to Cali.


RELATED: Crater standout Nathan Bittle transferring for senior season


Medford's Piyush Aneja is getting a head start in his basketball career. Aneja, a class of 2023 product, is joining the Southern California Institute of Sport. Aneja previously played for Bella Vista Prep in Scottsdale, Arizona.

"It can only help you from being in that type of environment," Aneja said. "Every game you play, I mean, even with COVID-19 like coaches are watching these streams... this is a next step to see like where I'm at, as far as my skill, my talent."

Southern California Institute of Sport, Bella Vista Prep and Prolific Prep are all schools in a larger network of Prep schools called The Grind Session. Almost like basketball academies, teams typically live year-round at the schools, although the current pandemic has changed that up for some.

The Grind Session is planning on hosting a few "bubble-style" tournaments in 2021 featuring the various prep schools. That kind of concentration of talent is what Aneja hopes gets some college coaches' eyes on his game. And as Aneja's mentor and trainer will tell you, exposure can have positive impacts on your success if you're ready to meet the challenges.

"Exposure is good," Jeff Carter said. "But you got to have the work ethic and believing yourself to be able to get on a basketball court and then be able to play."

Aneja is hoping that with a few more years of prep school basketball, he will get a better idea of how he stacks up against some of the best high-school-age talents in the country.

"It answers your question. You can really see it," Aneja said. "It's just all about improving every day because I plan to play on the prep route for, you know, as long as my high school career goes."

Carter thinks Aneja can succeed at the competitive prep level because he's been able to grind out training on his own, a maturity Carter says he doesn't see from a lot of athletes his age.

"I was just thinking with this bad situation with [Piyusg] his best thing, been the self-motivation just grinding and grinding and grinding and just saying 'I'm not gonna let this pandemic stop me from reaching my goal,'" Carter said.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 570892

Reported Deaths: 5936
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah94163940
Washington68918461
Marion55435570
Clackamas49836458
Lane44086397
Deschutes37530225
Jackson34484417
Linn20528221
Umatilla19500190
Douglas16386323
Yamhill13914168
Josephine13233291
Polk11966115
Benton1128646
Klamath11286179
Coos8563128
Malheur697096
Columbia599667
Jefferson587971
Lincoln530462
Crook467262
Union415665
Wasco392050
Clatsop369737
Tillamook293554
Hood River286638
Baker274440
Curry260141
Morrow256926
Grant137418
Harney130535
Lake116823
Wallowa99213
Sherman2333
Gilliam2254
Wheeler1722
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 7664368

Reported Deaths: 78553
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles246779728417
San Diego6675684559
Riverside5351265623
San Bernardino5138486267
Orange5098915953
Santa Clara2579941993
Sacramento2477782623
Alameda2149391575
Fresno2010802429
Kern1961251974
Contra Costa1628091091
Ventura1556551256
San Joaquin1467261960
Stanislaus1156521517
San Francisco109859702
Tulare1071131211
San Mateo101729647
Santa Barbara72722589
Monterey70370651
Sonoma68776432
Solano67327391
Placer58374513
Merced57147727
Imperial52057820
San Luis Obispo45057385
Kings43195396
Santa Cruz35593237
Madera33030336
Butte32484350
Yolo32382273
Shasta30590512
Marin30486253
El Dorado24845179
Napa20803111
Sutter18472199
Humboldt15471129
Yuba14050103
Nevada13685112
Tehama12228142
Mendocino11943111
San Benito1115391
Tuolumne997991
Lassen899459
Lake8639118
Amador706473
Unassigned63543
Calaveras600695
Siskiyou580162
Glenn547039
Del Norte436843
Inyo388050
Colusa384021
Mono28264
Plumas244912
Mariposa234519
Trinity116719
Modoc8626
Sierra2760
Alpine1190
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