Preps Talk

High School Lites Week 1 football capsules and picks


High School Lites Week 1 football capsules and picks

CSN Chicago will have cameras covering the biggest high school football games across Chicagoland on the opening kickoff week edition of High School Lites, Friday at 11:00 p.m. Can Mount Carmel get off to a good start against Taft? Will St. Rita and St. Patrick go down to the wire at Soldier Field? Who wins the annual Fox Valley battle between Prairie Ridge and Cary Grove? And can Marist get payback this season against neighborhood rival Brother Rice after losing to the Crusaders a season ago? Viewers can watch the show on CSN or live stream at

Taft vs. (14) Mount Carmel, 1:00 p.m. at Soldier Field

EDGY's Take: Mount Carmel will look to get off to a good start against Taft in the annual Preseason Prep Bowl Kickoff at Soldier Field, part of three games there on Friday. The Caravan will rely on senior QB Alek Thomas (Texas Tech) plus senior OL/DL Jeremy Cooper (Cincinnati) along with an experienced defense. Taft, coached by John Ysarouchas, welcomes back 14 returning starters (eight offense, six defense). Senior WR/LB Kevin Gniedziejko is a key for the Eagles on both sides of the football. 

EDGY's Pick: Mount Carmel 27, Taft 12

St. Rita vs. St. Patrick, 4:00 p.m. at Soldier Field

EDGY's Take: This matchup will be the second of three Friday at the Preseason Prep Bowl at Soldier Field. St. Rita and head coach Todd Kuska welcomes back 12 returning starters (seven offense, five defense). Keep an eye out for senior RB Chris Childers (Indiana State), senior QB Jake Zlyman and three starting offensive linemen back this fall. New St. Pat's head coach Adam Guerra features nine starters back (five offense, four defense) from last season and keep an eye on senior WR/DB Joey Lombardi and senior RB/DB Joey Solak. 

EDGY's Pick: St. Rita 27, St. Patrick 24

(23) Cary-Grove at (1) Prairie Ridge, 7:00 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Prairie Ridge enters the 2017 season with extremely high expectations. Senior QB Samson Evans (Iowa) leads the Wolves double-wing offense while senior OL Jeff Jenkins (Iowa) is one of three returning starters on the offensive line. Cary-Grove and head coach Brad Seaburg also bring back a ton of experience up front with five returning starters, including junior OT Addison West and senior OT Brett Groves (SIU). Also keep an eye on Cary-Grove senior RB/DB Max Skol. Can the Trojans defense slow down Samson Evans and the Wolves option game? Can the Wolves defense slow down the Cary-Grove power running game? 

EDGY's Pick: Prairie Ridge 28, Cary-Grove 14

(12) Naperville Central @ (19) Glenbard North, 7:30 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Naperville Central and head coach Mike Stine received quite a boost when junior QB Payton Thorne and senior WR/DB Jayden Reed both transferred into Central from Metea Valley this past spring. Also, keep an eye on senior RB AJ Deinhart and junior OL Luke Hallstrom for the Redhawks this fall. Glenbard North and head coach Ryan Wilkens lost some key players form a season ago. That said, the Panthers always have talent. Senior DB Tyrik Henderson (Minnesota) is a name to watch. Plus, the Glenbard North offensive line is a strength—led by senior Jose Vazquez. Can the Panthers generate enough offense this fall? Can the Redhawks offense dent a very strong Glenbard North defense?

EDGY's Pick: Naperville Central 17, Glenbard North 14

(7) Lake Zurich @ Fremd, 7:30 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Lake Zurich and first year head coach Luke Mertens takes over a Bears program recovering from an offseason hazing scandal. On the field, the Bears are stacked with 14 returning starters (eight offense, six defense). Keep an eye on senior QB Evan Lewandowski, senior OL Ian Fitzgerald and senior LB Jack Sanborn (Wisconsin). Fremd and head coach Lou Sponsel will rely on the defense early this fall. The unit returns six starters including senior DL Will McCabe (Western Michigan). The Vikings offense has just two returning starters back in senior WR Ben Konopka and senior OL Jake Flemming. Can Lake Zurich run the ball against the Vikings defense?

EDGY's Pick: Lake Zurich 21, Fremd 14

Stevenson @ (10) Palatine, 7:30 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Stevenson first year head coach Josh Hjorth takes over the Patriots program after serving as a long time assistant coach. The Patriots will rely on an experienced offensive line including senior OL John Maskalunas. The defense is paced by three-year senior starting linebacker Sam Marks.  Palatine also has a first year head coach in Corey Olson. The Pirates welcome back a ton of talent on both sides of the football. Keep an eye on senior LB Cortez Hogans (NIU) along with senior QB DJ Angelaccio plus senior WR Johnny O'Shea and senior WR Jack Orlando. Can the Patriots secondary defend the bigger Palatine receivers? Can the Palatine defense slow down the Stevenson running game?

EDGY's Pick: Palatine 27, Stevenson 21

Brother Rice @ (6) Marist, 7:30 p.m.

EDGY's Take: The South Side Super Bowl is this week at Marist. Brother Rice and head coach Brian Badke lost some key players to graduation but look for the Crusaders to rely on an experienced and big offensive line led by senior Nick Marozas (Indiana). Marist also saw its longtime head coach (Pat Dunne) step aside to take a job in the private sector. Stepping up is longtime assistant coach Ron Dawczak. Look for the Redhawks to rely on a talented senior class including tight end TJ Ivy (West Virginia), defensive end Gavin McCabe (Indiana), defensive tackle Elijah Teague (Minnesota) plus senior RB Delonte Harrell. Can the Redhawks defense slow down the Crusaders run game? Can Rice defend the entire field against the Redhawks spread?

EDGY's Pick: Marist 31, Brother Rice 30

Warren Township at (20) Barrington, 7:30 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Warren Township and head coach Bryan McNulty welcomes back 11 starters (six offense, five defense). The Blue Devils’ offensive skills are a strength with senior QB Ian Schilling, senior TE Ryan Short and senior WR Micah Jones (Notre Dame). Barrington and head coach Joe Sanchez welcomes back just six starters. But the Broncos always seem to reload. Keep an eye on senior QB Ray Niro. Can the less-experienced Broncos slow down the Blue Devils’ passing attack?

EDGY's Pick: Barrington 28, Warren Township 21

Viewers’ Choice

Lake Central (IN) @ Lincoln-Way Central, 7:00 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Last Friday, Lake Central defeated Munster 33-14. Will the Indians have an advantage with a game already under its belt? Expectations are high for Lincoln-Way Central and head coach Jeremy Cordell who will rely on a deep team with 15 returning starters back (nine offense, six defense). Senior RB Matt Pollack is a name to watch along with senior S Peyton Nigro. Can the Knights get out of the gates quickly in Week 1?

EDGY's Pick: Lincoln-Way Central 24, Lake Central 17

IHSA Football Playoff Pairings Show Roundup

IHSA Football Playoff Pairings Show Roundup


Revealing the Class 1A Bracket

Analyzing the Class 1A Bracket


Revealing the Class 2A Bracket

Analyzing the Class 2A Bracket


Revealing the Class 3A Bracket

Analyzing the Class 3A Bracket


Revealing the Class 4A Bracket

Analyzing the Class 4A Bracket

Predicting Class 1A-4A


Revealing the Class 5A Bracket

Analyzing the Class 5A Bracket


Revealing the Class 6A Bracket

Analyzing the Class 6A Bracket


Revealing the Class 7A Bracket

Analyzing the Class 7A Bracket


Revealing the Class 8A Bracket

Analyzing the Class 8A Bracket

Class 7A and Class 8A Predictions


High School Lites Week 9 football roundup


High School Lites Week 9 football roundup

High School Lites featured plenty of great action on Friday night as NBC Sports Chicago had highlights of many of the area's top matchups. Some playoff dreams came to fruition while others crashed and burned. 

Watch tomorrow as the IHSA playoff brackets are revealed tomorrow on NBC Sports Chicago+ at 8 p.m. Be sure to also follow us on Twitter @NBCSPreps for all of the latest IHSA football scores and highlights. 

DRIVE: Prairie Ridge: Episode 10

Wintrust Athlete of the Week: Back of the Yards QB Jeremiah Harris

St. Xavier Team of the Week: De La Salle Meteors

Friday's Top 25 Games

No. 1 Lincoln-Way East 18, No. 19 Bolingbrook 14 

No. 2 Prairie Ridge 55, Dundee-Crown 14

No. 3 Maine South 56, Niles West 9

No. 4 Marist 42, Joliet Catholic 14

No. 5 Lake Zurich , Mundelein

No. 6 Phillips 53, Clark 0

No. 9 Homewood-Flossmoor 50, Sandburg 14

No. 10 Barrington 40, Conant 19

No. 11 Huntley 45, McHenry 7

No. 12 Naperville Central 35, Lake Park 21

No. 13 Hinsdale Central 42, Hinsdale South 14

No. 24 St. Charles North 35, No. 14 Batavia 28

No. 16 Wheaton North 20, Waubonsie Valley 10

No. 17 Crete-Monee 52, Cahokia 8

No. 18 St. Rita 47, Marmion 14

No. 20 Lyons 31, Oak Park-River Forest 14

No. 21 Nazareth 48, Marian Catholic 7

No. 22 Oswego 30, Plainfield Central 0

Mount Carmel 35, No. 23 Providence 34

Other Highlights

Tinley Park 29, Evergreen Park 0

T.F. South 21, Oak Forest 14

Glenbard North 24, Neuqua Valley 14

St. Edward 29, Wheaton Academy 28

Marian Central Catholic 44, St. Patrick 21

Saturday's Top 25 Games

No. 7 Loyola vs. Brother Rice

No. 8 Glenbard West vs. Proviso West