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  • Writer's pictureBig Tim

Big Tim's Elite 25 Players In Chicago Area!!!!!!!!

Updated: Apr 12, 2021

This is my 2nd annual All-Area team. As usual great talent on this team and very accomplished for shortened season. Co-Players of the Year this year. Some do not have division one offers because of the NCAA rule giving every player an extra year. Chicago Public League coaches for the most part cooperated with statistics for their players. Thanks to all the coaches and administrators for turning in information on their players. Team rankings are Big Tim's area rankings. With that said, here we go:

MAX CHRISTIE JR (Rolling Meadows) 6'7" senior guard - Repeat selection. Co-Player Of The Year. McDonald's All-American was outstanding all year long. All time leading scorer in Mid Suburban Conference history with exactly 2100 points. All time leading scorer in Rolling Meadows history. Led team to an undefeated(15-0) abbreviated season and #3 ranking. Michigan State commit is a gifted offensive player who can score on all three levels. He's a knockdown three point shooter, has a nice spin move to get to the basket and finish with either hand, and nasty two dribble pull-up from mid range. He averaged 25 points, 10 rebounds(double/double), 4 assists, 3 steals, and 2 blocks a game. He was also 91 percent from the foul line which is a school record. He filled out the stat sheet while leading the Mustangs to their first Mid Suburban Conference title in 30 years. Christie also hit a couple of half court shots this year to end quarters.

BRYCE HOPKINS(Fenwick, Oak Park) 6'7" senior wing - Repeat selection. Co-Player Of The Year. Kentucky commit did it all this season for the Friars. Tony Lawless Award Winner( Player of the Year in Chicago Catholic League). Second year in a row he has won the award. Double/double machine. Made game winning assist twice this season, and game winning shot once. Final finish of #12 in Big Tim's poll. Team was 13-3 Chicago Catholic League Blue Co-Champs. Team played in the Chipotle Clash Of Champions getting to the Semifinals. He averaged 24.4 points, 12.5 rebounds(double/double), 2.9 assists, 1.8 steals, 1.5 blocks per game. He was 32% from three, 66% from two, and 76% from the free throw line. He's a load to deal with playing point guard a lot of the time this season. Position-less player has a nice first step driving to the basket, and is strong enough to finish through contact and double teams. He can hit the mid range pull-up jumper with efficiency. He exploded onto the scene his sophomore year making the starting lineup.

TY JOHNSON, DePaul Prep(Chicago) 6'2" senior point guard- Repeat selection. Loyola Chicago commit. He is one of the biggest sleepers in the Chicago Area in a long time. Power 6 level recruit headed to a Mid Major. Had an outstanding senior season leading his team to the Chipotle Clash of Champions title. Undisputed leader of the #2 team in Chicago Area. Averaged 20.2 points, 4.1 rebounds, 3.4 assists, and 1.9 steals a game. He can score on all three levels with a lethal three point shot, nice floater from mid range, and above the rim finisher at the basket. Tough defender who gives the opposing guards fits with his pressure defense. All-Chicago Catholic League.

JAVONTE"JJ TAYLOR, Kenwood Academy(Chicago) 6'8" sophomore wing - Big time breakout year for his first year getting significant minutes on Varsity. Transfer from Morgan Park(Chicago) stepped his game up big time this year. Versatile wing played all perimeter positions this year for a young team which went 12-2. Only loses were to powerhouses Simeon(Chicago) and Curie(Chicago). Averaged 28 points, 6.2 rebounds, 3.7 assists, 2.5 steals, 1.5 blocks. Number 7 ranked prospect in Class of 2023 in the nation by 247 composite which encompasses all ranking services. He can score from three, mid range, and finish at the rim. Is great at playing the gaps on defense, getting steals with his long arms and anticipation. Future McDonald's All-American. Made Chicago Sun Times All-City Team.

ISAIAH BARNES, Simeon(Chicago) 6'7" senior wing - Michigan commit shot the three ball at a high level this year. Is the classic wing that can guard all front court positions on the high school level. Rebounded well for his position. Adjusted to Chicago Public League basketball with no problem. Transferred from Oak Park River Forest. Team went 9-1 with only loss to Evanston Township in Chipotle Clash of Champions. Chicago Public League South/Central Champs. Made Chicago Sun Times All-City Team. Mismatch nightmare and was engaged all season long. Underrated player nationally.

BLAKE PETERS, Evanston Township 6'1" senior guard - Repeat selection. Princeton commit is the all-time leading scorer in school history. Hit some big shots in his career including a last second three to win over Notre Dame College Prep(Niles) in Chipotle Clash of Champions Quarterfinals. Team ended up finishing second in Chipotle Clash of Champions. Led the Wildkits to their 7th straight Central Suburban South title which means he won the title every year in high school. Can finish at the basket with either hand. Hits three point shots off the dribble along with catch and shoot. Peters also had some big steals on defense along with rebounding very well for a guard. Three time All-Central Suburban Conference. Team went 17-3 ranked 4th in Big Tim's poll.

CONNOR ENRIGHT, Mundelein 6'2" senior point guard - Drake commit helped put the Mustangs back on the map in Chicago Area with 43-6 record in last two seasons. Averaged 14.5 points, 4 rebounds, 6 assists a game. He shot 46% from three, 83% from free throw line. Outstanding shooter and floor general for a 13-2 team. Lost in Quarterfinals of Chipotle Clash of Champions partly because Enright was out with injury. Four year starter. Team was North Suburban Champion. Sacrificed a lot of his offensive ability to run the show and get others involved. Team ended up ranked 7th in the Chicago Area. Made Lake County All-Area Team as Team Captain.

ROBBIE AVILA, Oak Forest 6'9" junior forward - One of the most versatile big men in the state. A top 5 prospect in Illinois with division one offers. Averaged 25.5 points, 11.5 rebounds(double/double), 3.0 assists a game. South Suburban Conference Co-Player of the Year. Set school record for points in a game with 42 vs Tinley Park. Set school rebounding record with 21 vs Richards(Oak Lawn). Great passer from the post. Has a great jump hook over either shoulder and can hit the three at a high rate. Led team to an 11-2 record in rebuilding season. One to watch next season.

CHAZ HARVEY, Gwendolyn Brooks(Chicago) 6'2" senior guard - Most underrated player in the Chicago Public League Red. Stone cold scorer though teams loaded up their defense to stop him. Averaged 20 points, 6.8 rebounds, 2 steals a game. Knockdown three point shooter and can get to the basket and finish. Led the team to huge wins over Corliss(Chicago) and Bogan(Chicago). Had 22 points and 8 rebounds vs Bogan(Chicago). Led team to 7-4 in first year in the Red in a number of years. No recorded offers but would be a steal for any division one program. Made Chicago Sun Times All-City Team.

AHAMAD "BLACK CAT" BYNUM, Simeon(Chicago) 6'2" senior guard - Repeat selection. DePaul commit is a big time scorer. Bynum gets off the bus and can score. He score from all three levels, three pointer, mid range floaters, and finishing at the rim with either hand. Can run the point guard position with good vision to set up teammates for baskets. Has quick hands to get steals, and the athleticism to finish with nasty dunks. Puts players on posters(dunks on people). Watch your head. Range out to 25 feet. Team went 9-1 as team finished 5th in the Chicago Area. Chicago Public League South/Central Champs. Made Chicago Sun Times All-City Team.

ANDRE CASEY JR, Whitney Young(Chicago) 6'8" junior wing - Repeat selection. Made the team playing at Tinley Park last season. Ranked 21st in the country in his class by 247 composite(combines all scouting services). Casey can score from the perimeter as well as posting up on the block. He prefers scoring off the dribble and pull-up three point shots. Good rebounder and shot blocker. He dunks on opponents on the regular. Took some time to fit in with the Dolphins in the shortened season. Team went 15-1 and finished 6th in the Area. Chicago Public League Red North/West Champs. Only loss was in the Chipotle Clash of Champions Quarterfinal to eventual winner DePaul College Prep(Chicago). Has a bunch of division one offers. Made Chicago Sun-Times All-City Team.

KAM CRAFT JR, Buffalo Grove 6'5" junior wing - Repeat selection. Write-up is by his coach which did a great job with it. He has led BG to an 11-5 record with losses to only 2 teams (RM and Hersey). He set the single season scoring average for a season at 27.1 ppg. He is shooting over 53% from the floor, 41% from 3 and 87% from the FT line. He leads our team in rebounds (7.4rpg), assists, blocks and steals (2.9 spg). He has scored 1694 points in his career. He currently has offers from Maryland, Nebraska, Xavier, DePaul, UIC, and a few more. He is being recruited by Virginia, Wisconsin, Iowa and Oregon to name a few. He was a unanimous all-conference selection this year. Last year Kam was recognized as All-Conference, Chicago Sun-Times All-State 2nd team, AP All-State Honorable Mention, New-Gazette All-State 2nd team and IBCA All-State 3rd team. Thanks Buffalo Grove Coach Keith Peterson.

TROY D'AMICO, Notre Dame College Prep(Niles) 6'7" senior wing- Repeat selection. Southern Illinois(Carbondale) commit. Team was ranked #1 in the state for most of the year. Heartbreaking loss to Evanston Township in the Chipotle Clash of Champions Quarterfinal losing on a last second shot. Made a game winning layup vs Benet(Lisle). Versatile offensive player who can step out and hit threes along with scoring in the paint. Good rebounder. Team won East Suburban Catholic Conference Title. Three time All-East Suburban Conference Selection. Mismatch nightmare at the high school level.

JOHN POULAKIDAS, Neuqua Valley(Naperville) 6'6" senior guard - Repeat selection. Yale commit. Averaged 14 points, 5 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 1 steal a game. Shot 44% from the field. Can hit threes off the dribble, score in the mid range post area with nice shot off one foot. Finishes strong at the basket with his left hand. Team finished 3rd in the DuPage Valley Conference. Has the ability to explode in the scoring column as he had 49 points at Bolingbrook his junior year. First team All-DuPage County Conference.

RASHARD HARRIS, Kankakee 6'5" senior guard - Averaged 15.1 ppg, 5.8 rpg and 4.5 apg for a 12-1 team that won the Southland Athletic Conference regular season and post season tournament titles. Finished his Kankakee career with a 39-5 record. First part of write up from his coach. Thanks. Versatile player who is unsigned. Can play all three wing positions including point guard. Filled in at a number of spots for Kankakee. Versatile defender who can guard all 5 spots on the high school level. Another steal for any division one program.

JULIAN ROLLINS, Hillcrest(Country Club Hills) 6'6" senior wing - Kent State signee. All-Conference as a junior and senior. Averaged 15 pts per game and was the leader in scoring for a team that consisted of numerous potential division 1 players. Was the leader of the team. Did not play a lot in some games due to the score, or his averages would have been higher. First part of write-up is by his Coach Don Houston. Thanks. Leader for undefeated South Suburban Champs and #1 team in Area. Fills stat sheet in all areas, scoring, rebounding, assists, steals. Versatile defender and offensive player. Made team stronger when he returned from injury. South Suburban Blue Co-Player Of The Year.

JAKOBI HEADY, Hillcrest(Country Club Hills) 6'6" senior wing - Moraine Valley signee. All-Conference as a junior and senior. Second leading scorer on the team. Averaged 14 pts per game. Super talented player who could score on all levels and could defend. Did not play a lot in some games due to the score, or his averages would have been higher. First part write-up by Coach Don Houston. Thanks. Another versatile talent on both ends of the court. Hits the boards with high level intensity and relentlessness. Huge part of South Suburban Champs and #1 team in Area. Victim of NCAA rule that gave all players an extra year of eligibility. Otherwise he would be going to a division one program next season. Made All-South Suburban Team.

JADEN SCHUTT, Yorkville Christian 6'5" junior guard - One of the top prospects in the state in Class of 2022. Led team to 10-1 record playing an Independent schedule. Finished #1 in Class A AP Poll. Averaged 26.2 points, 8 rebounds, 4 assists, 3.6 steals a game. Shot 66% from two point range, 40% from three, and 84% from free throw line. Possibly the best three point shooter in the state as you cannot leave him open. Good at drawing fouls and getting to the free throw line. Efficient when he needs to shoot a shot inside the three point line.

BRADEN HUFF, Glenbard West(Glen Elyn) 6'10" junior forward - The top Class of 2022 prospect in Illinois not named Andre Casey Jr. Versatile player who can run point, score from all three levels on the court. Good three point shooter, rebounder and shot blocker. Averaged 17.5 points, 6.5 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 1.5 blocks a game. Shot 70% from two point range, 46% from three, 71% from free throw line. Team finished 16-1 and won West Suburban Silver Title, and West Suburban Tournament Title. Finished 8th in the Area. Numerous division one offers.

LOUIS LESMOND, Notre Dame College Prep(Niles) 6'6" senior guard - Harvard commit. French import can score from three, off the dribble, good passer. Hit a 3/4 court shot to beat Fenwick(Oak Park) in regular season game. Filled out the stat sheet all season for team that was ranked #1 most of the shortened season. Lost on heartbreaking last second shot in Chipotle Clash of Champions Quarterfinal. Can play all three wing positions including running point. Team won East Suburban Catholic Conference Title. Two time All-East Suburban Conference Selection. Ended up ranked 9th in Area.

ANTHONY TAYLOR, Richards(Oak Lawn) 6'7" senior forward - Moraine Valley JUCO Commit. Double/double machine most of the season. Versatile defender. Scoring machine at all three levels. Averaged 24.6 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 steals, 1 block per game. Shot 50% from the field. Team won South Suburban Red Conference. Teams loaded up on him late in the season when they lost 4 players to ineligibility. He still found a way to score with great efficiency. Bulldogs were ranked most of the season. South Suburban Red Player Of The Year.

GARY JOHNS, Westinghouse(Chicago) 6'7" senior forward - Unsigned prospect. Can play all over the floor showing his versatility. Averaged 17 points 11 rebounds and 3 blocks a game. Team went 8-1 in Chicago Public League Red North/West only loss to #6 Whitney Young(Chicago). Conference runner-up. Warriors finished ranked 21st in Area. Can handle like a guard, hit the boards well for his position. Division One teams need to take a look at this young man. Made Chicago Sun Times All-City Team.

BRANDON HALL, Thornton(Harvey) 6'4" senior guard - East Tennessee State commit. He had to carry the team most of the season with loss of players from last season. Averaged 24 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists. Versatile game. Can shoot the three, slash to the basket and finish. Good passer and defender on the ball and off the ball. He has been a consistent stat sheet stuffer his entire career. Team finished runner-up in the Southland Conference. A steal for Mid Major East Tennessee State. Made Southtown All-Area Team.

TRENTON KYLER, DeKalb 6'2" senior guard - Leader and stat sheet stuffer for the Barbs. Outstanding three point shooter. Floor general. Averaged 20.8 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists a game. Shot 52% from three, and 84% from three point line. Team finished 18-1 along with 10-0 in DuPage Valley Conference. Conference champs. Barbs finished ranked #16 in the Area. DuPage Valley Conference Player Of The Year and 1st team performer. Has scored over 1000 points in his career.

TIMARIS BROWN, St Patrick(Chicago) 6'5" junior wing - Leader for the Shamrocks. Averaged 16.3 points, 7.4 rebounds, and 1.5 blocks a game. All-East Suburban Catholic Conference. He can score from three and slashing to the basket. Has the ability to run point as well as score on put backs of offensive rebounds. Team finished 8-3 in shortened season. Do it all player for the Shamrocks. Has an offer from Western Illinois. Made Chicago Sun-Times All-City Team.

Thanks to all the coaches for your nominations. I had only 25 spots so some did not make the team. There are a lot of talented players in the Chicago Area.

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