All-USA forward Jabari Parker won't play in Simeon's opener

By Dave Daniels

Jabari Parker, last year’s Gatorade Basketball Player of the Year from Simeon Academy (Chicago), won’t play in his team’s opener with Milton, Ga., this Saturday in the Chicago Elite Classic, but he will play this season according to his father.

Parker, a 6-8 power forward, broke a bone in his right foot while playing for Team USA’s U-17 team over the summer.

“He’s gone from two crutches to one crutch and today, for some reason, he wasn’t even wearing the boot,” said Sonny Parker, a former NBA player. “He’s not ready to play yet, but he will play this season. It’s better to wait and not come back too early.”

Jabari is planning on making an official visit to Stanford soon and that will finish up his first round of official visits. He visited BYU over the Thanksgiving weekend, to the delight of all Cougar fans. Parker has already made official visits to his other final schools of Michigan State, Duke and Florida.

Just because Parker isn’t playing in the opener, however, don’t rule Simeon Academy out for their fourth straight state championship. All that matters is that Parker is healthy at the end of the year so that he can do something even Derrick Rose wasn’t able to during his time at Simeon: win a state championship every year of his eligibility. Rose won two state titles while at Simeon and Parker has already one-upped him but wants to do it again this season.

“Winning three state championships (is my biggest accomplishment) because I [compare] myself with Derrick,” Parker said. “I just try to be there, so I can one-up him every time. He’s been successful and hopefully I can make it towards him, so I can’t talk right now.”

Parker is kind of a shy guy and doesn’t talk much. He just lets his game speak for itself.

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