(3-19-17) – In some states, like Kentucky, middle school athletes are allowed to compete on varsity level teams.  One of the most well-known 8th graders in the US is Bowling Green’s Zion Harmon.  Thanks to Harmon the Purples will be playing for a Kentucky State Championship team this afternoon (Bowling Green wins KHSAA state basketball championship, beating Cooper 67-56. Purples (36-2) finish season with 29 consecutive wins. Harmon leads the way with 21 points and is named to the All-Tournament team).

18 states in the US allow middle school athletes to move up to the high school level.

Kentucky 7th-8th Grade Participation By-laws

KHSAA By-law for 7th-8th Grade participation

Saturdat at Rupp Arena, Harmon would bring the ball down the full length of the court and hit the game-winner on a sweet pull-up jumper with just 23 seconds remaining to give Bowling Green a 80-79 ‘Sweet 16’ game win over Scott to advance to the championship. Harmon had 18 points for the Purples in the win.

Zion Harmon told the Courier-Journal after the win:

“Basically, I knew we needed a bucket to get to the state championship. That’s all that was on my mind.”

As a 7th grader, Harmon moved from the Washington DC area, and played for the varsity team at Lighthouse Christian (20-9) in Antioch, Tennessee, he averaged almost 17 points a game, including scoring a game high 34 points (8 of 9 3-pointers) vs Providence Academy . A coaching change at Lighthouse and Zion and his dad headed for Bowling Green for his 8th grade season.

The question many basketball experts are thinking about now is, will Harmon stay in Bowling Green, will he move back to the DC area or is their a prep school in his sights? Harmon would be a major addition for any boys high school basketball team.

Harmon is not the first middle schooler in Kentucky to transfer to be able to play on a varsity team, A.J. Youngman, 6’5 Senior who just finished his career at Peoria (Illinois) Manual and is an Eastern Kentucky signee,  played at Greenup County for one season for his father as a seventh-grader, he than moved with his dad to his new coaching job at Thomas Nelson (Bardstown) and played their the next two seasons before relocating to back to Illinois where his father had coached in the past .

So it would not be surprising to see Harmon move on after this season and start his freshman year in a new location. Harmon has been receiving numerous major DI college offers that could play a big part in where he might continue his career.

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