Big Tim's Elite 25 in Chicago Area Week 3!!!
There were a lot of upsets this week with Bloom, Bogan, and Morgan Park losing which has shook up my Top 10. There will be a new #1 and just like college basketball, how long will the new team keep that ranking? Here we go:
1) Evanston Township(8-0)- They jump from #7 with losses to teams in front of them, and their undefeated record. They beat arch rival New Trier and three time defending champ Orr(Chicago) at the Team Rose Classic on Sunday. It seems like this teamHigh gets great performances from game to game from a different player. The Wildkits have seems to make their five guard offense work for them and not against them. Junior guards Blake Peters and Jaylin Gibson have been consistent performers, but juniors Daeshawn Hemphill, Isaiah "Itchy" Holden, Elijah Bull, and sophomore Rashawn Bost have stepped up from time to time. This junior laden team is looking to make a third straight appearance in the State Finals, and are making a big statement this early in the season. They are at Maine South(Park Ridge) on Friday.
2) Bloom Township(Chicago Heights)(8-1)- They drop to #2 this week after losing at Thornton Township by 3 points. They did recover to blow out St Laurence(Burbank) at the Team Rose Shootout. The Blazing Trojans have not had senior guard Donovan Newby for the last 3 games, but word is he'll be back very soon, maybe at the Pontiac Holiday Tournament. Senior forward Christian Shumate, senior guard Dante Maddox Jr have been the most consistent performers for this team. High major senior forward Martice Mitchell and senior guard Keshawn Williams have given some good performances as well. Bloom has the most talented starting five in the area, and could get back to #1 more than a few times this season. They are at Thornwood(South Holland) on Friday.
3) Bogan(Chicago)(9-1)- Bogan blew out Simeon earlier in the week, beat Class 2A contender Corliss in a tough game. It looked like they would move to #1 this week if they beat Notre Dame College Prep at the Team Rose Shootout. Alas, they suffered an upset at the hands of the Dons and dropped one spot. Senior guard Antoine Bloxton was sensational in that game with 27 points but did not get much help from anyone else. Junior guard Darrion Jones is a great penetrator, but will have to get a consistent three point shot for the Bengals to return to Peoria. Bogan will need more consistent inside play from senior forward Tremear Fraley, and three point shooting on the other wing from senior wing Scott Lanier. Bogan is of this week. They next play at the Proviso West Holliday Tournament in first round play against Crete Monee.
4) Morgan Park(Chicago)(4-2)- The Mustangs drop one spot this week. They were supposed to play Curie last week, but it was postponed to another date. They beat Kenwood Academy and lost in overtime to Collinsville at the Edwardsville Shootout. Senior guard Adam Miller had 31 points vs Collinsville. It seems like this team is trying to work their recent eligible transfers into the rotation. Team chemistry is still being worked on with Marcus Watson Jr, Brandon Weston to go along with the Brown transfers. I still believe this team is a legit threat to win Class 3A this season. They play Michelle Clark(Chicago) on Friday before heading out to the Beach Ball Classic(Myrtle Beach,SC) for Christmas.
5) Whitney Young(Chicago)(4-2)- The Dolphins took care of business this week beating Walter Payton and winning a tough one at Lincoln Park. Senior guard DJ Steward had 21 points vs Lincoln Park. Young is quietly showing that they are a very good team, and a huge threat to win the Class 4A State Title. Steward and point guard Tyler Beard have to be consistent producers for this team. Senior forward Sanjolay Nige and junior forward Grant Newell will have to rim protect and give some scoring punch for this team to take off. They will be at the City of The Palms in Florida starting Thursday.
6) Thornton Township(Harvey)(6-0)-The Wildcats jump ten spots after upsetting previously #1 Bloom by 3 points at home. They also took care of Rich Central at home. Senior Brandon Hall is one of the players who are not known in the area, but they play well as a unit. They have shown to be a real threat in their conference, and a Class 4A State title contender. Thornton plays Proviso East(Maywood) at home on Wednesday.
7) Notre Dame College Prep(Niles)(7-2)- This team is without their junior point guard Anthony Sayles(knee, day to day), they lost a tough one at Loyola Academy, they beat Marian Catholic(Chicago Heights) ,and then upset previous #2 Bogan(Chicago). Senior forward Joe Bergstrom, junior forwardsTroy D'Amico, and Louis Lesmond have stepped up their games in Sayles absence. They play Friday at Joliet Catholic Academy.
8) Curie(Chicago)(5-0)- This team is slowly creeping up the rankings and blowing out Hillcrest(Country Club Hills) is a great step. Senior guard Ramean Hinton has been the bell cow and catalyst for this team. Junior point guard Nick Owens has run the offense with excellent efficiency, along with great pressure defense. Senior forward Armond Williams Jr, senior guard Josiah Hammons, and junior forward Reggie Ward have been steady contributors. Tough week for Curie as they are at Simeon on Thursday, then at North Lawndale on Saturday.
9) Fenwick(Oak Park)(8-1)- Took care of business this week beating St Frances De Sales, Providence St Mel, and IC Catholic. Junior forward Bryce Hopkins and sophomore point guard Trey Pettigrew have had great starts to the season. Their supporting cast is doing just enough to keep them as contenders in the Chicago Catholic League. They are at St Rita(Chicago) on Friday.
10) Loyola Academy(Wilmette)(8-0)- They beat #7 Notre Dame College Prep and Marmion Academy last week. The Kwiecinski twins Bennett and Jordan 6'8" forwards are the leaders of this team. They have received help from the football field in the way of junior point guard Vaughn Pemberton in running their deliberate offense. This team has Steinmetz(Chicago) on Monday, at Providence St Mel(Chicago) on Friday.
11) Simeon(Chicago)(2-2)- Lost to Bogan at home by 22 points then beat St Rita at Team Rose Shootout. They need another scorer to help Junior guard Ahamad "Black Cat" Bynum though senior Jeremiah Williams is starting to emerge. They are at Westinghouse on Wednesday, and host #8 Curie on Thursday.
12) Marian Catholic(Chicago Heights)(5-2)- Lost to Notre Dame College Prep this week, The one constant is senior point guard Ahron Ulis has been consistently brilliant, he needs his teammates to come along. They have Tinley Park coming in on Tuesday.
13) Stevenson(Lincolnshire)(7-1)- They beat Libertyville and Zion Benton in conference play, but was upset by Oak Park River Forest at the Team Rose Shootout. This results in a 7 spot drop. This team is still a big threat with senior guard Matt Ambrose, senior forward RJ Holmes, senior guard John Ittounas, and junior point guard Evan Ambrose. They play Tuesday at Lake Zurich, and Yorkville Christian at home on Friday.
14) Glenbrook South(8-0)- Senior forward Dom Martinelli and the Titans keep rolling through conference play. A showdown with #1 Evanston which they play twice, is coming after the New Year.
15) Orr(Chicago)(4-3)- Tough schedule they had 3 games in 3 days over the weekend. It all continue as they head to Minnesota later in the week. Senior guard Reggie Strong should be eligible soon.
16) Homewood Flossmoor(6-1)- Senior forward's RJ Ogom is a beast.
17) West(Joliet)(8-1)- Junior guard Jamere Hill has been a revelation for this junior laden team.
18) Lincoln Park(Chicago)(7-2)- The junior backcourt of Ismail Habib and Julio Montes is one of the best backcourts in the Chicago Public League.
19) Mundelein(8-0)- Junior guard Connor Enright and junior forward Scottie Ebube have been a great duo since their freshman years.
20) Bolingbrook(6-2)- They split their games in Iowa and senior guard Darius Buford is one of the most underrated guards in the Chicago Area.
21) DePaul Prep(Chicago)(7-1)- Junior guard Tyler Johnson is another top guard in Class of 2021 in Illinois.
22) Niles North(Skokie)(9-1)- Senior guard Aquan Smart is one of the most underrated guards in the State of Illinois, and is getting high major attention.
23) Lake Park(Roselle)(8-0)- Newcomer to rankings. Senior guard Luke Sgarbossa has had a great senior season.
24) St Charles North(8-1)- Newcomer to rankings. Senior forward Connor Linke is one of the best Big men in Chicago Area.
25) North Lawndale(Chicago)(8-1)- Newcomer to rankings another Chicago Public League Red North/West team. No name players who are trying to stake their claim to respect in the CPS.