2000: Eddie Griffin (Seton Hall)
Griffin sat atop ESPN’s old rankings of the top-100 high school players from the 1999-2000 class. The Philadelphia native was an excellent player on the court — though dealt with some issues off of it. A 6-foot-10 forward with terrific ball skills, Griffin was a member of the McDonald’s All-American team. He averaged a double-double as a freshman at Seton Hall (to go along with 4.4 BPG). However, Griffin got in a fight with a teammate which led to him eventually entering the NBA Draft after one year in college.
Though he put up big numbers in college, Griffin at the time was still far too slender to make a real impact. The Nets took him No. 7 Overall in the 2000 NBA Draft with the hopes he’d turn into the next Kevin Garnett. Instead, a number of off-the-court issues plagued Griffin to the point where he never was able to realize his immense potential. Sadly, at age 25, Griffin passed away when he crashed his car into a moving train.
Other noteworthy players from his H.S. class: Darius Miles, Gerald Wallace, Zach Randolph
Image Source: The Dream Shake