What a strange and unpredictable high school sports season it’s been in 2020-21.

In August, we at LocalSportsJournal.com went ahead with publication of our annual high school football preview section, despite the uncertainty about whether or not the season would be played. As it turned out, we sent the section to the printer just moments before the Michigan High School Athletic Association announced that football would be moved to the spring of 2021.

It was a good thing we published, however, because a few weeks later the state reversed itself and let football begin in late September. So our preview was out in plenty of time.

We started working on our annual prep basketball preview section in November, just before Gov. Whitmer announced that winter contact sports were postponed until further notice. Like any small business in that situation, we laid everyone off and went largely into mothballs until we knew when winter sports could begin.

In late January the state announced that the winter sports season would begin on Feb. 21, so we resumed work on the preview section, with the goal of getting it out to the public about a week before that. Then suddenly the state reversed itself again and allowed sports to begin on Feb. 8, leaving us in the lurch.

To shorten a long story, our 2021 basketball preview section is now printed and in local retail outlets, where you can pick up your free hard copy!  There is also a PDF of the section attached below and linked in this story, so you can check it out online.

The preview section features a cover story about Orchard View star Ke’Ontae Barnes, a kid who has had a challenging life, but has used basketball and his own good sense to avoid the kind of trouble so many teens fall into and became an All-Stater on the court.

There are profiles of Mona Shores’ Brad Kurth and Fruitport Calvary’s Brad Richards, two very successful girls coaches who took the challenge of taking over struggling boys teams this season. There is a story about Muskegon Heights, the area’s most successful basketball school, choosing to sit this season out.

And of course there are previews of 42 local boys and girls high school basketball teams.

So pick up your free copy of LSJ’s high school basketball preview section today, to get a better feel for how all of our local teams might fare as the new season unfolds. And please remember to patronize the advertisers, because without them high school sports coverage would not exist.

MUSKEGON (Lakeside)
Ghezzi’s Market, 2017 Lakeshore Dr.

MUSKEGON (Downtown)
Boom Town Market, 351 W Western Ave.
Subway, 380 W. Western Ave.

Maple Island Grocery, 3465 Maple Island Rd.
Marathon gas station, 5586 Apple Ave.
E and A Grocery, 2829 Apple Ave.
E and A Grocery, 2391 Marquette Ave.
Sunny Mart, 2021 Marquette Ave.
Jack’s Corner Store, 2381 E Apple Ave.

Jacks Corner Store, 4190 Grand Haven Rd.
Shell gas station, 4185 Grand Haven Rd.
Subway, 4215 Grand Haven Rd.
Ladd’s and Co. 4230 Henry St.
Pic N Pack, 5187 Henry St.
Norton Mini Mart, 3381 Mc Cracken St.
Lombardos Pizza, 1697 W Sherman Blvd.

Subway, 420 N Whitehall Rd.
Hardings, 520 Whitehall Rd.
Ace Hardware, 605 Whitehall Rd.
Adventure EZ Mart, 3003 Whitehall Rd.
Roadside Express, 310 Ruddiman Dr.

Advance Auto, 3274 E Colby St
NAPA Auto Parts, 120 Thompson St.

Montague Foods, 8718 Water St.

Cherry Hill Super Market, 424 N State St
The Ladder Community Center, 67 N State St
Marathon Gas, 4252 W Shelby Rd.

Subway fruitport, 6370 Airline Rd.
Village Pharmacy of Fruitport, 10 S 3rd Ave
Subway, 5506 Harvey St Suite 106 (by the Lakes Mall).

Orchard Market, 17026 Lloyds Bayou Dr.
Subway, 414 E Savidge St.

Arturo’s Tacos, 305 N Beacon Blvd.
Subway, 1125 S Beacon Blvd

John’s Market, 6044 Main St.
Ray’s MiniMart, 2210 Holton Rd.
Speedway, 2170 Holton Rd.

Holton Grocery, 8764 Holton-Duck Lake Rd.

BP Gas, 1028 W Main St.
Speedway, 902 W Main St.
Bills Shop-N-Save, 921 W Main St.
Whispering Pines Country Store, 8153 Skeels Rd

Ed’s Market. 75 W Michigan Ave.
E-Z Mart, 11 N Division Ave
John’s Gas, 196 S Division St