Ohio State recruit named Ohio’s Mr. Basketball

Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary's Malaki Branham, an Ohio State recruit, on Wednesday was named Ohio's Mr. Basketball. OHSAA photo
Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary's Malaki Branham, an Ohio State recruit, on Wednesday was named Ohio's Mr. Basketball. OHSAA photo

Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary High School senior Malaki Branham was announced as Ohio Mr. Basketball Wednesday by a statewide media panel.

LeBron James won the Mr. Basketball Award in 2001, 2002 and 2003 while at St. Vincent-St. Mary. With Branham earning the award in 2021, the school now has a state-record four Mr. Basketball trophies. The complete list is below.

Now in its 34th year, the award was first given by the Associated Press in 1988. It has been voted by the Ohio Prep Sportswriters Association since 2017.

An Ohio State signee, Branham led St. Vincent-St. Mary to a 25-2 record this year and the Division II state championship, averaging 21.3 points per game, 5.1 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.8 steals. He scored 37 points in the state final.

Akron Buchtel junior Chris Livingston was the Mr. Basketball runner-up. Other finalists include Kobe Johnson of Canton McKinley, Luke Chicone of Mentor, Desmond Watson of Columbus DeSales, Kobe Rodgers of St. Xavier, George Mangas of Lima Shawnee, and Kobe Mitchell of Cadiz Harrison Central.

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