Harry Giles, the nation's top-ranked rising sophomore, suffered a serious knee injury last week in Uruguay while playing for USA Basketball’s U16 squad. Upon returning from the FIBA America's World Championships, Giles had an MRI and received devastating news: The 15-year old phenom had torn his ACL, MCL and meniscus. Surgery, possibly within the next month, is on the horizon.
Giles thinks he suffered the potential sophomore season-ending injury during the team’s second game against Argentina. "I was on the fast break and I felt someone on the right try to take the ball. Then from behind, [I] got pushed [and got] hit on the outside of my knee,” Giles said.
Giles had been USA's starting power forward before the collision and the team went on to win the FIBA America's championship without him. “But there was a noticeable downtick in the energy of the guys,” according to a source at the event.
Giles is one of the elite prospects -- if not the best overall -- in all of high school basketball. As a freshman, he teamed with North Carolina pledge and No. 13 recruit Theo Pinson to produce a state championship at Wesleyan Christian, a school just outside of Winston Salem, N.C. He averaged 13.0 points, 7.0 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 2.0 steals on the season and drew the attention of head coaches at Duke, North Carolina and Kentucky.
In a nutshell, this is one of the top young basketball players on the planet in his age group. He's a special prospect because of his ability, his makeup and his ceiling for improvement. When an injury of this magnitude happens, it typically takes the player out for the better part of a season. Giles is ranked as the top player in his class, which by the way, could be one of the top groups in recent memory. The approach on our end in evaluating him will be patience as he should be given the proper time to recover and rehab. As much as he's a high school star and future collegian, the reality is this is a young man with a long-term future in the game of basketball. Expect decisions to be made with the proper perspective and he’ll be allowed to take as much time as needed to return.