De La Salle of Concord isn't the only nationally ranked high school team coming to Sacramento on Saturday night.
While the Spartans will play Folsom in the Northern California Open Division football championship at Sacramento State, Archbishop Mitty of San Jose will be at Sheldon in a battle of national boys basketball powers.
Mitty, two-time defending CIF Division II state champion, has one of the nation's top players in 6-foot-8, 215-pound senior Aaron Gordon and is ranked 12th nationally by USA Today and MaxPreps.com.
Gordon is rated the No. 7 player in the Class of 2013 by Rivals.com, and he's already taken official recruiting trips to Kentucky, Arizona, Kansas, Oregon and Washington, though he said he likely won't select a college until the spring.
Sheldon, the defending CIF Northern Regional Division I champion, is ranked 16th nationally by MaxPreps.com and has three Division I scholarship signees.
Like Gordon, Sheldon's D'Erryl Williams and Dakarai Allen are highly touted four-year players. Both have signed letters of intent with San Diego State.
Senior forward-guard Darin Johnson, who signed with Washington, won't be eligible to play until January, per section rules, after his offseason transfer from Franklin.
The showdown with Mitty will be the Huskies' only local game until Jan. 9.
Sheldon will play in the Tarkanian Invitational from Dec. 19 to 21 in Las Vegas, the Torrey Pines Holiday Classic from Dec. 26 to 29 in San Diego and the Allstate Sugar Bowl Classic from Jan. 3 to 5 in New Orleans.
Sheldon is ranked No. 4 in the state by MaxPreps, behind Long Beach Poly, Salesian of Richmond and Mitty. Sheldon is one spot in front of Mater Dei of Santa Ana, the team that beat the Huskies 66-48 for the Division I state title in a foul-plagued game last season.
Mitty will open its season Friday by hosting Jesuit, Sheldon's Delta River League rival. Sheldon beat Jesuit in last season's Sac-Joaquin Section and NorCal championship games.
Youth movement Three sophomores guards Dante Henley and Isaiah Bailey and center Kori Collons are getting plenty of playing time for a Jesuit team with several new faces.
The Marauders graduated their top five players Parker Uu, Akachi Okugo, Kurt Parker, Bryce Pressley and Brian Glodowski from last season's 27-7 team, and coach Greg Harcos said starting junior point guard and co-captain Nick Hilton is expected to miss at least three to four more weeks because of a broken clavicle suffered in an automobile accident a couple of weeks ago.
Hilton's injury, coupled with sixth man Thomas Sperbeck's decision to take a break between football he's a Division I recruit and track and not play basketball his senior year has left the Marauders a work in progress.
"You lose Thomas and you lose Nick, and that's tough because both are dynamic leadership guys," Harcos said. "But this is a good group. I enjoy working with them."
Collons, 6-5, the son of former Jesuit and New England Patriots defensive lineman Ferric Collons, gives the Marauders size up front, along with juniors Brady Anderson (6-8) and Lake Lutes (6-6), an emerging star.
"He's a puppy," Harcos said of Collons, also a football player. "Once he grows into his body, he's really going to be tough and nasty."
Jesuit had impressive come-from-behind wins over Kennedy and Foothill, and it made a late fourth-quarter run at Monterey Trail before falling to the Mustangs 64-56 in the championship game of the Jack Scott Tournament on Saturday at Rio Americano.
"It's really encouraging," Harcos said. "There's no quit in them."
Jesuit travels to Oakland on Thursday to play McClymonds before playing at Mitty the next night.