LaRavia was born on Nov. 3, 2001, in Pasadena, California. His family moved from sunny Pasadena to Indianapolis when LaRavia was six years old. He played basketball for Lawrence Central High School in Indianapolis. He had a limited role until his senior season, in which he became the team's leading scorer, averaging 17.3 points, 6.8 rebounds, 3.9 assists and 2.3 steals per game. He earned Indiana All-Star honors and helped Lawrence Central win its first sectional title since 2012. LaRavia first committed to playing college basketball for SIU Edwardsville but reopened his recruitment after a coaching change. He later committed to Indiana State. As a freshman at Indiana State, LaRavia averaged 9.4 points and 5.9 rebounds per game. He was named to the All-Newcomer and All-Freshman Teams in the Missouri Valley Conference. In his sophomore season, LaRavia averaged 12.3 points and 6.3 rebounds per game, earning second-team All-MVC recognition. Following the departure of coach Greg Lansing, LaRavia transferred to Wake Forest. He averaged 14.6 points, 6.6 rebounds and 3.7 assists per game as a junior. He was named to the second-team All-Atlantic Coast Conference. On March 29, 2022, LaRavia declared for the 2022 NBA draft while maintaining his college eligibility. On June 1, 2022, he announced that he would remain in the draft and forgo his remaining college eligibility. He was selected by the Minnesota Timberwolves with the 19th overall pick.