The City of Pine Bluff, Go Forward Pine Bluff, and Simmons Bank announced the field for the 2021 King Cotton Holiday Classic which will be held December 27-29 at the Pine Bluff Convention Center.
Go Forward Pine Bluff CEO Ryan Watley said that the tournament is a gem for Pine Bluff.
Mayor Shirley Washington said that the King Cotton Holiday Classic shows that greatness is in the DNA of the City of Pine Bluff.
The tournament will feature 16 boys teams in addition to hosting four girls teams. Teams attending this year’s event are listed below:
o Beaumont United High School Timberwolves (Beaumont, Texas)
o Coach: David Green, whose 2022 team is #23 Nationally in the SBLive Power
25, went undefeated in 2021, 31-0, claiming the Class 5A Texas State Champ.
o 6’6” 4-Star SF Terrence Arceneaux (Class of 2022), #40 Nationally, #6 Texas,
o 6’4” SG 4-Star Wesley Yates (Class of 2023), #34 Nationally, #4 Texas
o Calvary Baptist Academy Cavaliers (Shreveport, La.)
o Coach: Vic Morris, whose teams are coming off back-to-back Louisiana District
1-1A Championships and Division IV State Runner Up campaigns with a 28-6
finish in 2021.
o 6’6” F La’Bree Williams (Class of 2022), Considering Texas A&M, Houston,
Louisiana Tech, UAB, ULM, Cleveland State, Grambling State
o 5’11” PG Martin McDowell (Class of 2022), Considering Northwestern State, East
Texas Baptist, LSU-Shreveport
o Cane Ridge High School Ravens (Antioch, Tenn.)
o Coach: Marlin Simms, now in his 19 th season, led his 2021 team to a 16-1 Covid-
shortened season record and TSSAA AAA State Runner-Up finish.
o 6’8” 5-Star SF Brandon Miller (Class of 2022), #11 Nationally, #1 Tennessee,
Considering Alabama, Kansas, Tennessee State, G League
o 6’4” G/F Ryan Oliver (Class of 2022), NAIA-DII prospect
o 6’7” G/F Da’Ron Hall (Class of 2024), DI prospect
o Cardinal Ritter College Prep Lions (St. Louis, Mo.)
o Coach: Ryan Johnson, whose Lions are winners of back-to-back Missouri Class
5 State Championships.
o 6’5” 3-Star SG Braxton Stacker (Class of 2022), #276 Nationally, #6 Missouri,
Murray State Commitment
o Christian Brothers High School Cadets (St. Louis, Mo.)
o Coach: Justin Tatum, one of the state’s top coaches, is 216-94 over the past 12
seasons. His son, Jayson, played at Duke University and in 2017 was selected
as the third overall pick in the NBA Draft by the Boston Celtics.
o 6’0” G Robert Martin (Class of 2022), Considering Bowling Green, Dayton, UIC,
Toledo, Milwaukee-Wisconsin, Wichita St., Mount St. Mary’s and NJIT
o 6’5” SG Larry Hughes, Jr. (Class of 2022), #270 Nationally, #7 Missouri,
Considering SLU, Butler, Loyola Chicago, Bradley, Dayton, Penn, Indiana St.
o 6’5” G/F Mikhail Abdul-Hamid (Class of 2022), Considering Washington, NW
Missouri State, SIUE, VMI, Florita Atlantic University, Elon, Drury and Drake
o 7’2” C John Bol (Class of 2024), Considering Kansas State, Clemson, Illinois St.,
SLU, Mizzouri, Lindenwood, Butler, Ohio, Notre Dame and Arkansas
o 6’2” G Anthony Gause (Class of 2024), Considering Mizzouri, Wright State,
Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Iowa State, SIUE and Marquette
o De La Salle Institute Meteors (Chicago, Ill.)
o Coach: Gary DeCesare, whose St. Raymond’s New York team, led by future
Razorback Kareem Reid, won the 1993 King Cotton Holiday Classic.
o 6’2” G DaJuan Bates (Class of 2022), #374 Nationally, #35 Illinois
o 6’6” WF Evan Jackson (Class of 2023), #37 Illinois
o 6’1” PG Mike Davis (Class of 2024)
o Goosecreek Memorial High School Patriots (Baytown, Texas)
o Coach: Jamaal Haymon, whose fast-paced “Points Per Game / Push Push Go”
offensive system led this top 10 Class 5A school to a 24-4 record and an 18-
game winning streak in 2021 during his first season at Goosecreek.
o 6’6” F Sam Bradford (Class of 2022), Considering Texas A&M, Lamar & W. Mich.
o 6’7” F Dariyus Woodson (Class of 2022)
o 5’10” PG Avant Coleman (Class of 2022)
o Hightower High School Hurricanes (Missouri City, Texas)
o Coach: Stephen Woods, now entering his 20 th year as a basketball coach and
seventh year at Hightower, is coming off a 17-3 Covid-10 shortened season.
o 6’3” Aaron Williams (Class of 2022)
o 6’2” Jacori Chatman (Class of 2022)
o 6’4” Traeveon Hannah (Class of 2022)
o 6’0” Kyrin Dock (Class of 2022)
o Huntington High School Raiders (Shreveport, La.)
o Coach: Mack Jones, University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB) alumnus
o Magnolia High School Panthers (Magnolia, Ark.)
o Coach: Ben Lindsey, now in his 3rd year at Magnolia and 17 th overall, recently
joined his father and grandfather in winning state championships, all at Magnolia.
His grandfather won in football, while his dad won in basketball.
o He won his first state championship in 2021 and lost in the semifinals last year.
o 6’4” 4-Star SG Derrian Ford (Class of 2022), #55 Nationally, #3 Arkansas, 2021
Arkansas Gatorade Player of the Year, MVP of 2019 and 2020 State
Championship Tournaments, Arkansas Commitment
o 6’5” F Devonta Walker (Class of 2022), Considering SAU
o North Little Rock High School Charging Wildcats (North Little Rock, Ark.)
o Coach: Johnny Rice, whose 2022 team is #10 Nationally in the SBLive Power 25,
defeated Little Rock Central in 2021 for the Class 6A State Championship.
o 6’6” 5-Star Nick Smith, Jr. (Class of 2022), #6 Nationally; #1 Arkansas, Arkansas
o 7’0” 5-Star C Kel’el Ware (Class of 2022), #17 Nationally, #2 Arkansas, Oregon
o 6’5” 3-Star Corey Washington (Class of 2022), Considering UA-Little Rock,
UAPB, Ouachita Baptist University
o Parkview Arts & Science Magnet High School Patriots (Little Rock, Ark.)
o Coach: Scotty Thurman, now in third year and formerly with Razorbacks
o Coach leads a young, but talented Patriots team in his return KCHC appearance.
o 6’7” SF Dallas Thomas (Class of 2024), #17 Nationally, #1 Arkansas
o 6’7” G/F Cameron Wallace (Class of 2022), Considering UCA, UAPB and SEMO
o 6’4” F Jeff Kamanga (Class of 2022)
o Pine Bluff High School Zebras (Pine Bluff, Ark.)
o Coach: Billy Dixon, whose 2021 squad lost a nail biter to the Sylvan Hills Bears
and star Nick Smith, Jr. in the Class 5A state quarterfinals.
o 6’3” Courtney Crutchfield (Class of 2024) is a wide receiver for the football team
and has piqued the Razorbacks’ interest.
o Raymond High School Rangers (Raymond, Miss.)
o Coach: Tony Tadlock, leads a team coming off five straight championship game
appearances with three of those resulting in Mississippi Class 4A State.
Championships (2017-2019) and two with runner-up finishes (2020- 2021)
o 6’9” G/F Eric Paymon, Jr. (Class of 2024), Ole Miss Offer
o 6’0” Jabarie Robinson (Class of 2022) and 5’10” Tremaine Dixon (Class of 2022),
arguably the best backcourt in the state, scored a combined 41.7 PPG in 2021
o Watson Chapel High School Wildcats (Pine Bluff, Ark.)
o Coach: Marcus Adams
o 6’7” F Antwon Emsweller, Jr. (Class of 2022) averaged 15.4 points, 8 rebounds
and 2 blocks per game as a junior; Considering an East Central (Okla.)
University offer with interest in Oral Roberts, The Citadel and a few JUCO offers
o 6’3” G Khamani Cooper (Class of 2023), UAPB Offer and UCA interest
o 6’4” G/F Christopher Fountain (Class of 2022), Considering SAU Tech and
NorthArk College offers
o 5’7” PG Keshun Brown (Class of 2022), Considering SAU Tech
o White Hall High School Bulldogs (White Hall, Ark.)
o Coach: Josh Hayes
o 6’6” Jai’chaunn Hayes (Class of 2025), #1 Arkansas
Huntington High School Raiders, Girls’ Varsity (Shreveport, La.)
o Coach: Brandon Shyne, recently led his teams to back-to-back Class 4A State
Championship game runner-up finishes
Hutchinson School for Girls Sting (Memphis, Tenn.)
o Coach: Thomas Jones
Sylvan Hills High School Bears, Girls’ Varsity (Sherwood, Ark.)
o Coach: Shelley Davis, whose team returns three starters
o Karsyn Morgan (Class of 2022) and Jayla Harris (Class of 2022)
Watson Chapel High School, Girls’ Varsity (Pine Bluff, Ark.)
o Coach: Leslie Henderson
o The Lady Wildcats will bring one returning starter in 5’5” G Tatyana Barbee
(Class of 2022) and an otherwise inexperienced, but talented team of new faces
to the King Cotton Holiday Classic.
Pine Bluff Parks and Recreation Executive Director Samuel Glover announced the teams for the tournament. That announcement and more can be seen in the video below.