• 22-MAR-2022

2021-22 Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year Award Winner Gradey Dick

BEL AIRE, Kan. [March 22, 2022] – In its 37th year of honoring the nation's most elite high school athletes, Gatorade today announced Gradey Dick of Sunrise Christian Academy in Bel Aire, Kan. is the 2021-22 Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year. Dick won the prestigious award for his accomplishments on and off the court, joining an impressive group of former Gatorade National Boys Basketball Players of the Year who have combined for five NBA MVPs awards, 76 All-Star appearances, 14 NBA championships, 27 NBA first round draft picks and three Hall of Famers.

Boston Celtics forward-guard and 2015-2016 Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year Jayson Tatum virtually surprised Dick with the news, while his family, coaches and teammates showed up with the trophy at school. Check out a video of the announcement here.

The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the court, distinguishes Dick as the nation's best high school boys basketball player. The Gatorade Player of the Year Selection Committee, which leverages experts including coaches, scouts, media and others to evaluate candidates, selected Dick from nearly half a million other student-athletes who play boys basketball nationwide.

Competition for the national award was fierce. Dick topped the list of state winners in boys basketball who collectively boast an incredible list of accomplishments, including six returning state Gatorade Players of the Year, 29 with a GPA of 3.5 and above and 31 with signed National Letters of Intent or verbal commitments to play basketball at Division I colleges/universities.

“The team’s leading scorer with 17.9 points per game at Sunrise Christian, Gradey is a long and lean knock-down shotmaker with a high basketball IQ and nice positional size,” said Paul Biancardi of ESPN Basketball. “More than a one-dimensional player, he will also finish drives, take charges and rebound, all of which helped his team win the NIBC regular-season title. What makes him special is that he combines talent, effort and good character. Kansas has an incoming player who will make an impact both on and off the court.”

The state’s 2019-20 Gatorade Player of the Year at Wichita Collegiate School, the 6-foot-7, 205-pound senior guard has led the Buffaloes to a 25-1 record and a berth in the Geico Nationals Tournament. Dick averaged 17.9 points, 5.2 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.9 steals per game through 26 games, shooting 46.7 percent from behind the arc and hitting on 51.3 percent of his field goal attempts. A McDonald’s All-American Game selection, Dick was one of five finalists for the Naismith award. He will represent the United States at the Nike Hoop Summit in April, and he was a member of the gold-medal winning Under-18 U.S. team at the 3-on-3 World Cup last summer.

A member of the Young Life Christian ministry, Dick has volunteered locally at a food pantry and shelter for the homeless in addition to serving as a middle school math tutor twice a week for the past two years. He has also donated his time to the Special Olympics, Sunrise Christian Academy Basketball Camps, the Buddy Hield Basketball Camp and as a guest speaker/guest coach for younger students at school during his lunch period.

Dick has maintained a weighted 3.66 GPA in the classroom. He has signed a national letter of intent to play basketball on scholarship at the University of Kansas this fall.

“When you look at the stats Gradey Dick has achieved on the court, it’s undeniable that he’s worthy of joining a long line of past Gatorade Players of the Year,” said Gatorade Senior Vice President and General Manager Brett O’Brien. “There is a ton of talent among the nearly half a million student-athletes across the nation who compete in boys basketball, but no one lights it up quite like Dick while also excelling in the classroom and making a difference in his community.”

Each year, a selection committee evaluates the nation’s top talent to choose one state winner from each of the 50 states as well as Washington D.C., in 12 different sports: football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, baseball, softball, boys and girls soccer, and boys and girls track & field. In all, 608 athletes are honored each year. From the pool of state winners, one national winner is selected in each of the 12 sports.

Gatorade has a long-standing history of serving athlete communities and understands how sports instill valuable lifelong skills on and off the court. Since the program's inception in 1985, Gatorade Player of the Year award recipients have won hundreds of professional and college championships, and many have also turned into pillars in their communities, becoming coaches, business owners and educators. Previous winners include a distinguished list of athletes, such as Peyton Manning, Abby Wambach, Jayson Tatum, Elena Delle Donne and many other sports icons.

To learn more about the Gatorade Player of the Year program, check out past winners or to nominate student-athletes, visit playeroftheyear.gatorade.com or follow us on social media on Facebook at facebook.com/GatoradePOY, Instagram at instagram.com/Gatorade and Twitter at twitter.com/Gatorade.







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