Bリーグ/日本国内 日本代表/FIBA

Little Known High School Basketball in Japan


July 2021.

FIBAU19 World Cup in Latvia.

Japan lost all of its games and finished in last place, 16th.

But make no mistake, there were some great players.

In this article, I'll introduce Japanese high school basketball, which has produced NBA players such as Rui Hachimura and Yuta Watanabe.

Overview of High School Basketball in Japan

They are called "BUKATSU," and they are the main activities at the high school.


Japan's top professional basketball league, the B-League, their clubs have also youth teams, but it is still young and does not have the same presence as in Europe. It is developing rapidly.

We don't have a system like the AAU in the US.

In general, private high schools are known as powerhouses, although not as same as IMG, Montverde or Oak Hill in the United States. This is not only true for basketball.

Both Hachimura and Watanabe are from nationally known basketball powerhouses.

The same goes for Keisei Tominaga, who will be attending the University of Nebraska this fall.

*School in Japan starts in April every year, and graduation season is in March the following year.

*In Japan, it is known that the amount of practice is too much, especially at athletic powerhouses, and there is concern that academics are being neglected.

*It is not uncommon to see international student athletes being recruited, mainly from Africa, such as Senegal. The most famous is Maurice Ndour, who plays in the NBA and Euroleague. After graduating from high school in Japan, he went to Ohio University, an NCAA Division 1 program. Dou Gueye of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Nelly Junior Joseph(MAAC Rookie of the Year) at Iona University, and Tahirou Diabate, who transferred from the University of Portland to San Diego State, are also Japanese high school graduates.

Twice a year, national championships

High school basketball is popular, though not as popular as high school baseball, which is famous all over the world. High school baseball in Japan has produced many major leaguers.

One of them is Shohei Otani.

Inter-school athletics competition(called as "Inter-High")

It will begin soon. It takes place in mid-summer.

The title is contested by the school that wins the prefecture.

Winter Cup

Likewise, prefectural qualifiers will be held. This will be the last tournament for high school basketball players.

This event is held at the end of every year. It is literally a winter tournament.

Winter Cup

Japanese High School Players to Watch


6-7 Senior wing.

Like Hachimura, he plays for Meisei High School.

Japan's number one high school player. World class.

He will probably move on to an NCAA Division 1 school. It could be the University of Arizona, where Tommy Lloyd is the head coach, who recruited Hachimura at Gonzaga.

Winter Cup 2020.


Senior wing. 6-5. teammate of Yamazaki.

With this 1-2 punch, Meisei is the favorite to win.

Kanno is not as good as Yamazaki, but he's enough to play in NCAA Division 1.


6-0 guard. Senior.

Great ball handling and shooting.

Proved to be a strong heart in the U19 World Cup.

He plays for Ohori High School, a prestigious high school in Fukuoka Prefecture.


The youngest player in the U19 World Cup. He was only 16.

Promising, 6-7 forward.

Like Iwashita, he plays for Ohori High School.

International student athletes

There are a lot of really great players here.

However, they have not been able to advance to the NCAA. Most of them attend to Japanese colleges, which are not very high level basketball schools. It seems that they need academic skills and connections.

I would like to introduce them in the next.

Thanks for reading. Please let me know your thought via Twitter.



-Bリーグ/日本国内, 日本代表/FIBA
-, , , , , , , , , ,

Copyright© JOURNEYMAN-ジャーニーマン- , 2024 All Rights Reserved Powered by STINGER.