For the Simeon Wolverines, the entire 2011-2012 season felt like one long coronation. The team entered the year with back-to-back state championships, a top national ranking, and the No. 1 rated junior in the country, forward Jabari Parker. But while few doubted the Wolverines were on another plain in the local high school basketball landscape, there's still something to be said for finishing the job. On Saturday in Peoria, Simeon did just that: the Wolverines outlasted a feisty bunch from Proviso East to win the Class 4A state championship 50-48 , the sixth state title in the school's history.
The victory also carried a special bit of meaning for head coach Robert Smith, whose fifth state championship is the most in state history.
The victory completed an impressive 33-1 season for Simeon, whose only loss came to Nevada's Findlay Prep, a school that recruits college-bound players from around the country.
Chicago Bulls legend Scottie Pippen congratulated the Wolverines on Twitter:
Congrats to DRose's Simeon on another state championship— Scottie Pippen (@ScottiePippen) March 18, 2012
As Pippen notes, current Bulls star Derrick Rose spent his high school days at Simeon, winning state championships in 2006 and 2007.