Wildwood Catholic High School’s Taj Thweatt was The Press Boys Basketball Player of the Year this past season. Thweatt and Jahlil White, below, recently visited Temple University. Both have received scholarship offers from major NCAA Division I programs. ‘Traveling to different schools, seeing how people are, meeting different (coaching) staffs, I think that’s pretty cool,’ Thweatt said this week.

The news was hard for the coaches and players of the Wildwood Catholic High School boys basketball team to wrap their heads around.

The Crusaders will play this winter in a game televised around the country.

Wildwood Catholic will face The Patrick School at RWJ Arena in Toms River on Feb. 8 at 5:30 p.m. ESPNU will televise the game nationally.

“We’ve come a long way,” Wildwood Catholic coach Dave DeWeese said Tuesday morning.

The game is part of the Metro Classic, a showcase event that annually features many of the country’s top high school teams.

Wildwood Catholic vs. The Patrick School is part of a doubleheader.

Sierra Canyon, of California, will play Long Island Lutheran, of New York, at 7:30 p.m. ESPNU also will televise that game.

Sierra Caynon features freshman Bronny James, the son of Lebron James, and senior Zaire Wade, the son of Dwyane Wade.

“This is great for our kids,” DeWeese said. “They are very excited to have the opportunity to play in a game of this caliber. This has generated a lot of excitement, not only among our players but among the school and the community. “

Wildwood Catholic is the two-time defending Cape-Atlantic League champion. Few teams in CAL history will enter a season with as much hype as the Crusaders will in 2019-20. Crusaders guard Jahlil White has committed to Temple, while forward Taj Thweatt has committed to West Virginia.

The Patrick School features 6-foot-9 wing Jonathan Kuminga, who is expected to be one of the top picks in the 2021 NBA draft.

Despite its high profile, Wildwood Catholic will play in many of the same showcase events it has in the past.

“It was difficult to balance,” DeWeese said of the team’s schedule for the upcoming season. “We had a lot of opportunities, but so many events had committed to us in the past, I didn’t want to leave them high and dry. I wanted to maintain those events.”

What follows is Wildwood Catholic’s non-CAL schedule:

Dec. 21: Notre Dame at Ocean City PBA Tipoff Classic

Dec. 27: Boys Latin of Maryland at Boardwalk Basketball Classic

Dec. 28: Boardwalk Basketball Classic game

Dec. 30: Archbishop Wood, PA. at Jameer Nelson Classic at Widener University

Jan. 4: Elizabeth at Seagull Classic at Holy Spirit

Jan. 11: Manasquan at Hoop Group Boardwalk Showcase at Brookdale Community College

Jan. 18: Marist at Dan Finn Classic at Jersey City Armory

Jan. 25: Burlington Township at Coney Classic at Rancocas Valley

Feb. 1: Seton Hall Prep at Battle by the Bay at Atlantic City

Feb. 8: Patrick School at Metro Classic at RWJ Arena in Toms River

Feb. 9: Paul VI at Paul VI Winter Classic

Feb. 16: Camden at Cherry Hill East