Here is a look at the high schools that feature players who have been active with college scholarship recruiters recently:
Lucy Olsen, junior point guard
Olsen’s name had gotten around and she was considered one of the best players in the state as a sophomore.
Going into PIAA Class 6A playoff game last season against Cardinal O’Hara, the Lions’ No. 1 goal was to stop Olsen.
“I knew we couldn’t shut her out,” O’Hara coach Chrissy Doogan said last March, “but if she scores 10 or 12, we can still win. If she scores 24, 25, we’re not going to win.”
The Lions held Olsen to 10 and won, 43-37.
Olsen was rightfully named to the Inquirer’s Honor Roll list and was a PIAA Class 6A third-team selection.
She has even elevated her game to a higher level as a junior, scoring 19.8 point per game, up from 15.2 last season.
As a result, the 5-foot-9 junior has been rewarded with multiple scholarship offers.
Back in May, Olsen received offers from Villanova and Liberty. In July, she announced another from Drexel. She’s also fielded offers from La Salle, Bucknell, Fordham, Lafayette, Lehigh, and more.
Olsen has led the Rams to a 21-3 record and are bound for another run in the PIAA playoffs. She’ll have more time to build an already impressive resume.
Marianna Papazoglou, junior guard
Papazoglou is having an incredible season for Wildwood Catholic. The 5-11 guard is averaging 18.6 points, 8.9 rebounds, 5.5 assists, and 3.5 steals per game and was the first player in school history to score 1,000 points by her sophomore season.
She has led the Crusaders to an 18-2 record and tied for first place with Middle Township in the Cape Atlantic United division at 8-1.
Papazoglou has gotten interest from a number of schools, but an offer has not yet been announced.
She took visits at the end of 2019 -- announced on her Twitter page, usually in a photo with the coaching staff -- to Villanova, New Jersey Tech, Lehigh, Manhattan, and Loyola. It appears Papazoglou has taken two visits to Columbia.
An offer seems right around the corner.
Hakim Byrd, senior point guard
After Byrd re-opened his recruitment after decommitting from Binghamton last October, the point guard felt like he had some unfinished business.
“I just felt like betting on myself,” Byrd said in October. “I’ve been betting on myself all my life. … So why stop now?”
Once Byrd became available to schools again, he had interest from Appalachian State, Monmouth, Quinnipiac, Brown, Holy Cross, and St. Peters.
But on Friday, Byrd’s college business became finished when he announced on his Twitter account that he’ll be attending Marist. The tweet read, “100% COMMITTED.”
Byrd was named a second-team All Catholic member last year and improved to first-team this year.
Math, Civics and Sciences
Nisine Poplar, junior guard/forward
For someone who has just been playing organized basketball for two years, the sky is the limit for Poplar.
“I think I need more dog in me,” Poplar said on Friday. “I ain’t selfish. I like to get my team involved. But I know I have to keep working. I can’t be satisfied.”
The 6-4 swingman has offers from local schools such as Temple, St. Joseph’s, La Salle, and Drexel as well as distant programs such as Virginia Tech and Cal-State Bakersfield.
Two more distant programs came calling when Poplar announced on Saturday that he received a scholarship offer from Virginia Commonwealth and another from Auburn on Tuesday.
Poplar is averaging 19.7 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 3.0 assists per game and has helped the Mighty Elephants advance to the third round of the Public League playoffs after Tuesday’s win over George Washington.
With another season to go -- and another season on the AAU circuit with K-Low Elite -- we haven’t heard the last from Poplar.
Dyaeshon Shepherd, junior forward
Shepherd announced on Feb. 1 that he received his 13th Division I scholarship offer, from St. Joseph’s.
Shepherd, who was named second-team All Catholic on Tuesday, has five scholarship offers from the Atlantic 10. The other four include Richmond, George Washington, La Salle, and St. Bonaventure.
The 6-5 forward also has offers from Temple, Hofstra, and Towson.
Robert Jackson, junior defensive end
While Jackson contributes to the Wood basketball team, the 6-5 defensive end is gaining steam as a football player.
Jackson announced on Feb. 2 that he received a scholarship offer from Rutgers. Three days prior, he received another from Toledo.
Jackson is up to six offers, which include Syracuse, Bowling Green, Central Michigan, and Arizona State.
Johnny Martin III, junior running back
Martin was upset when Rutgers fired football coach Chris Ash back in September. The 5-11, 205-pound junior said relationships are a big deal during his recruiting process.
“I want to go to the school that’s going to best help me get to the NFL, but I want to know that the coaching staff is really looking at me as a person,” Martin said in October. “I’m looking for a coaching staff that I feel really cares about me.”
According to MaxPreps, Martin has accumulated more than 4,200 rushing yards and 21 touchdowns in his three years at Highland.
Martin has 12 offers, according to his Twitter page, with the last coming from Boston College in August.
On Feb. 2, he visited Syracuse as he posted a photo of himself in an Orange uniform and thanked the school for its hospitality on his Twitter page.
He also has offers from, among others, North Carolina State, Temple, Kent State, West Virginia, and Rutgers.