Preps Talk

CSN Preps Boys Basketball Power Rankings: Week 4


CSN Preps Boys Basketball Power Rankings: Week 4

The top six remain the same in this week's @CSNPreps Power Rankings as we begin two weeks of holiday tournament action.

The holiday tournaments of the next few weeks will give us a great glimpse at which teams are for real and which ones need to improve before the real tournament begins in March.

As a reminder, High School Lites will air on Saturday the next two weeks as we'll have plenty of holiday tournament highlights and some more player features.

1. Morgan Park (6-1, 3-0) (1) - The Mustangs had another impressive road win at No. 9 Bogan and now own conference road wins over their two biggest rivals. Proviso West will be a great test.

2. Simeon (4-1, 2-1) (2) - Nice week for the Wolverines as they knocked off No. 25 Vocational and also earned a nice national win over Washington powerhouse Rainier Beach.

3. Fenwick (7-0, 2-0) (3) - Fenwick had another slow start on the road against No. 23 De La Salle but ultimately pulled out the victory. Senior guard Mike Smith stepped up nicely in the win.

4. Curie (5-1, 4-0) (4) - Curie had to forfeit its win over Orangeville Prep in Kentucky, but they're still unbeaten in the area. Pontiac will be huge for them with talented teams like Simeon, Benet and Peoria Manual in the field.

5. St. Joseph (8-0, 3-0) (5) - The Chargers are still unbeaten and will definitely get tested at Proviso West. Hopefully senior center Nick Rakocevic (ankle) will be fully healthy by the time the tournament starts.

6. Kenwood (5-1, 4-0) (6) - Kenwood picked up two double-digit wins in the Red-Central this week as they await the chance to play Curie in January.

7. Riverside-Brookfield (8-1, 4-0) (8) - Two easy Metro Suburban West wins for the Bulldogs as they'll be the favorite to win the Jack Tosh Holiday Classic at York.

8. Evanston (8-1, 3-0) (9) - Evanston earned some quality wins over New Trier and Miami Senior High School down in Kentucky. The Wildkits are playing the King of the Bluegrass tournament this week.

9. Bogan (7-2, 3-1) (7) - Bogan lost at home to No. 1 Morgan Park but earned an overtime win over Christian Brothers, a good program from Missouri. Proviso West will be a great test for the Bengals.

10. Glenbard West (8-0, 1-0) (13) - Another win for unbeaten Glenbard West, as they don't have many tough tests at their own holiday tournament.

11. Marian Catholic (7-3, 2-0) (15) - Huge ESCC home win for Marian Catholic as they knocked off No. 12 Benet in overtime. The Spartans will be one of the favorites at the Big Dipper.

12. Benet (8-1, 1-1) (11) - Benet dropped its first game of the season in a loss to No. 11 Marian Catholic but bounced back with a convincing win over Conant. Pontiac will be huge for Benet since they'll likely get a crack at one of the state's elite teams.

13. Mount Carmel (9-1, 3-0) (NR) - The Caravan enter the CSN Preps Power Rankings (probably a week too late) as they earned another three wins this week. Now alone atop the Catholic Blue, Mount Carmel looks like one of the city's best teams.

14. Notre Dame (7-2, 1-1) (12) - Tough loss for the Dons at the buzzer to rival St. Patrick. Now they'll try to win the Wheeling Hardwood Classic this week, in which they are the favorite.

15. Joliet West (7-1, 2-1) (17) - Joliet West picked up a SouthWest Suburban Blue win and will now get a potential second-round game with No. 12 Benet at Pontiac.

16. Oswego (7-1, 3-0) (18) - Oswego outlasted rival Oswego East as they played well without point guard Malique Ross. The Panthers will participate in the Jack Tosh Holiday Classic at York.

17. Stagg (6-1, 2-0) (19) - Stagg had the week off as they prepare for the Jack Tosh Holiday Classic.

18. West Chicago (8-1, 2-0) (23) - West Chicago junior guard Tai Bibbs is having a great season and the Wildcats will be a team to watch at the DeKalb Holiday Tournament.

19. Naperville Central (7-2, 4-0) (NR) - With only two losses on the season to No. 16 Oswego and No. 10 Glenbard West, the Redhawks are looking like a strong contender in the DuPage Valley Conference.

20. Thornton (5-1, 3-0) (NR) - New head coach Tai Streets has done a nice job early at his alma mater as the Wildcats will be one of the favorites at the Big Dipper.

21. Downers South (6-3, 3-0) (21) - It was an up-and-down week for talented Downers South as they came back to beat No. 22 Hinsdale South before falling to Downers North the next night.

22. Hinsdale South (6-2, 2-1) (14) - Hinsdale South fell to Downers South but senior center Barret Benson is looking like a very strong Player of the Year candidate with his early play.

23. De La Salle (6-3, 1-1) (16) - Rough week for the Meteors as they lost at home to No. 3 Fenwick before falling to Thornwood at the Crete-Monee Shootout.

24. Hillcrest (7-2, 4-0) (NR) - Hillcrest joins the CSN Preps Power Rankings after a very strong start. They open the Proviso West Holiday Tournament with a tough test in Larkin.

25. Vocational (7-2, 1-2) (24) - Vocational fell to No. 2 Simeon but the Cavaliers still look like one of the premier teams in the Public League. They play next at the Kankakee Holiday Tournament.

Public League champion Simeon remains clear No. 1 in latest Preps Power Rankings

Public League champion Simeon remains clear No. 1 in latest Preps Power Rankings

The Class 1A and 2A regionals begin this week and the regular season is finishing up for every other team in the state. We're getting that much closer to state titles being decided in Peoria. Simeon remains the clear No. 1 in the latest Power Rankings after beating No. 4 Whitney Young and No. 2 Orr by double digits on the way to earning a third straight Public League Playoff title, while a couple of familiar faces are back in the tail end of the rankings.

1. Simeon (25-3, 9-0) (1) -- Simeon stays at No. 1 after winning the Public League Playoffs for the third consecutive year. The Wolverines have now defeated teams No. 2 through No. 6 in the Preps Power Rankings for a 6-0 record on the season in which the average margin of victory has been 14.5 points per game. The clear No. 1 in the state of Illinois, Simeon has the week off before the Class 4A playoffs.

2. Orr (22-4, 9-0) (2) -- Orr put up a good fight but they ultimately fell short to No. 1 Simeon in the Public League Playoff title game. The Spartans did gain revenge on No. 3 Curie, however, with a big semifinal win on Friday. Orr has to forget the title loss ahead of the Class 2A Playoffs that begin this week as the Spartans try to repeat as champions.

3. Curie (23-4, 8-1) (3) -- The Condors have only lost to No. 1 and No. 2 when it comes to in-state losses as they remain one of the most complete and balanced teams in the state. Curie has the week off before the IHSA Playoffs.

4. Whitney Young (22-7, 7-2) (4) -- Whitney Young earned a huge quarterfinal win over Morgan Park before falling to Simeon in the Public League Playoff semifinals. The Dolphins also have the week off before they attempt to repeat as Class 4A champions. 

5. Morgan Park (18-9, 7-2) (5) Disappointing result for the Mustangs as they lost on a buzzer-beater in the Public League Playoffs to Whitney Young. Defending champions in Class 3A, the Mustangs will rest this week before the playoffs begin.

6. Fenwick (18-7, 8-0) (8) -- The Friars earned two wins during the week as they beat Marmion while also getting a huge conference road win at Loyola. Fenwick will battle Taft during the week.

7. New Trier (22-3, 8-1) (9) -- New Trier had one of the best weeks of any team in the area as they picked up wins over Maine South and Evanston. Now the leaders in the rugged CSL South, the Trevians have some more tough games against Niles North and Glenbrook North this week. 

8. Evanston (20-5, 8-2) (6) -- Evanston's red-hot recent play was finally slowed down as they fell to rival New Trier. The Wildkits will try to bounce back when they play Vernon Hills in a Central Suburban crossover this week.

9. Oak Park-River Forest (21-5, 12-0) (11) -- The Huskies finished the West Suburban Silver season unbeaten following wins over York and Proviso West. OPRF gets a great test right before the playoffs when they face Hinsdale South in the West Suburban championship game.

10. Benet (21-4) (6-1) (12) -- Two wins for the Redwings this week when they beat Joliet Catholic and Stevenson. Things aren't easy for Benet this week as they head to Marian Catholic before hosting Carmel in two tough ESCC games. 

11. West Aurora (19-4, 8-0) (13) -- The winning streak is now 11 for the Blackhawks after beating South Elgin. West Aurora will play Bartlett and crosstown rival East Aurora this week as they try to keep the momentum going into the playoffs. 

12. Marist (23-4, 6-2) (15) -- Marist picked up a double-digit win over St. Patrick during the week as they prepare for the Class 4A draw. The RedHawks will have an ESCC game against Marian Central this week. 

13. Niles North (22-4, 5-4) (8) -- The Vikings fell to CSL South rival Maine South and followed that up with an overtime win over a tough Wisconsin team in St. Catherine's. The Vikings get a crack at conference leader New Trier this week before playing Maine West in a tough Central Suburban crossover. 

14. Marian Catholic (20-4, 5-3) (16) -- Three wins for the Spartans during the week as they knocked off Nazareth, Rich Central and Marian Central. Marian Catholic gets a tough test this week when they host Benet in its final ESCC game.

15. Naperville North (23-2, 14-1) (17) -- The Huskies have won eight straight games as they clinched at least a share of the DuPage Valley Conference with a win over Waubonsie Valley this week. Naperville North hosts Wheaton-Warrenville South this week to decide the DVC title.

16. DePaul Prep (20-6, 5-3) (19) -- Picking up a convincing double-digit win over Mount Carmel, the Rams got back on track after the loss to Brother Rice. DePaul Prep will host Montini during the week as they prepare for Class 3A. 

17. Loyola (21-6, 5-3) (10) -- Tough recent stretch for the Ramblers as they fell to St. Joseph and Fenwick to fall out of the Catholic League Blue race. Loyola hosts Steinmetz for a tune-up this week. 

18. Hillcrest (21-5, 13-0) (21) -- Hillcrest survived a tight win over T.F. North before winning convincingly against Oak Forest. The Hawks have the week off as they prep for Class 3A. 

19. Leo (19-5, 8-0) (22) -- Finishing the regular season with a big win over Marmion, the Lions will be one of the area teams to watch in the Class 2A playoffs as they are in the Marshall Regional. 

20. Homewood-Flossmoor (16-6, 7-1) (23) -- Another huge win for Homewood-Flossmoor as the Vikings took down Bolingbrook to keep a lead in the SouthWest Suburban Blue. Homewood-Flossmoor goes on the road this week to battle Sandburg and Lockport. 

21. Hinsdale South (20-5, 10-2) (24) -- The Hornets stayed hot with wins over Addison Trail and Proviso East as they clinched the West Suburban Gold. Hinsdale South has a tough battle against Oak Park-River Forest in the West Suburban championship game this week. 

22. St. Viator (22-5, 8-0) (25) -- The Lions picked up some wins against Carmel and Bartlett. St. Viator will try to close out the ESCC with an undefeated record when they play Nazareth this week. 

23. Bolingbrook (17-6, 5-3) (18) -- Bolingbrook fell out of the SouthWest Suburban Blue conference race when they lost to Homewood-Flossmoor. The Raiders still have some tough games to close out the regular season when they play Lincoln-Way East and Stagg.

24. Maine South (20-7, 6-4) (NR) -- Huge win for Maine South as they knocked off Niles North after losing to New Trier in overtime earlier in the week. The Hawks close out the regular season with a Central Suburban Crossover against Highland Park.

25. Willowbrook (22-5, 9-3) (NR) -- Willowbrook is back in the rankings by earning three double-digit wins over Morton, Leyden and Downers South. The Warriors have only lost to ranked teams like West Aurora and Hinsdale South lately as they've been playing well. 

Five top-25 matchups highlight loaded episode of High School Lites

Five top-25 matchups highlight loaded episode of High School Lites

High School Lites had five matchups between top-25 teams on Friday night as the Public League Playoff semifinals and big matchups in the CSL South, Catholic League Blue and SouthWest Suburban Blue took shape.

Be sure to follow us on Twitter @NBCSPreps for the latest news and scores for IHSA basketball.

Wintrust Athlete of the Week: Palatine's Eduardo Orozco

Saint Xavier Team of the Week: Maine West girls basketball


No. 1 Simeon holds off No. 4 Whitney Young

No. 2 Orr gets revenge on No. 3 Curie

No. 9 New Trier takes down No. 6 Evanston

No. 8 Fenwick handles No. 10 Loyola Academy

No. 23 Homewood-Flossmoor rallies past No. 18 Bolingbrook

Oswego East upsets No. 20 Joliet Central

Andrew shuts down Thornridge

Sandburg tops Lockport in OT

Richards runs by Shepard

Maine West captures second straight girls basketball regional title