Preps Talk

High School Lites Week 3 football capsules and picks


High School Lites Week 3 football capsules and picks

CSN Chicago will have cameras covering the biggest high school football games across Chicagoland on the Week 3 edition of High School Lites, Friday at 11 p.m. Can Notre Dame travel to Nazareth Academy and beat the Road Runners in LaGrange Park? Can Hillcrest keep posting those lopsided scores this week against 6A power Lemont on the road? So who can get to three wins first and take another big step towards the state playoffs in Buffalo Grove or Maine West ? And who do you have in the annual DuPage Valley Civil War between Waubonsie Valley and Neuqua Valley? Watch the show on CSN or live stream at

Notre Dame at No. 18 Nazareth, 7 p.m. *#SendEdgy*

EDGY's Take: Notre Dame (2-0) is off to a strong start under veteran head coach Mike Hennessey, including a last second 17-14 win over Benet Academy on Friday. Keep an eye out for Notre Dame RB Ty Gavin, plus QB Tom Drabik and a Don's defense that's been very impressive so far this season. Nazareth Academy (2-0) was able to post a 28-0 shutout win last Friday over De La Salle. The Road Runners are loaded with talent with varsity experience, including senior DL/OL Isaiah Lee (Iowa State), junior WR/RB/DB Devin Blakely and junior WR/DB Michael Love. Has Nazareth Academy truly been tested this season? Can Notre Dame defend and shut down the Nazareth offensive weapons?

EDGY's Pick: Nazareth Academy 27, Notre Dame 24

Crystal Lake Central at No. 2 Prairie Ridge, 7 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Crystal Lake Central (2-0) was able to beat rival Crystal Lake South last Friday and will try to derail Prairie Ridge (2-0). The Tigers will look towards its big and physical line play led by Northwestern commit Wyatt Blake and senior DL Cade Keenan. Prairie Ridge will counter with its double wing attack led by Iowa commit QB Samson Evans, plus Iowa senior OL/DL Jeff Jenkins. Can Crystal Lake Central slow down the Prairie Ridge running game? Can the Wolves defense improve this week after allowing 43 points last Friday to Huntley?

EDGY's Pick: Prairie Ridge 35, Crystal Lake Central 20

Hillcrest at Lemont, 7 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Hillcrest (2-0) and first year head coach Morgan Weaver has been on fire since Week 1 as the Hawks offense has scored 129 points in two game while also not allowing a point so far. Keep an eye on junior WR/DD Corey Crooms for the Hawks. Lemont (1-1) was able to beat Bartlett last week as the Indians got off to a quick start behind the passing combo of QB Matthew Mattius and WR Austin Nagel. Can the Indians defense slow down the Hillcrest offense? Has Hillcrest been tested as much as they will be this week in Lemont?

EDGY's Pick: Lemont 31, Hillcrest 30

Buffalo Grove at Maine West, 7 p.m.

EDGY's Take: Both Buffalo Grove (2-0) and Maine West (2-0) are off to a good start this season and this game could potentially play a big factor in the eventual state playoff picture. Buffalo Grove has gotten a strong performance so far from QB Conor Adams along with junior RB/LB Tom Trieb. Maine West and head coach Jason Kradman's offense has been piling up the points behind QB George Markakis, and also keep an eye on senior TE/DE Matt Kentgen for the Warriors. Can the Maine West offense dent a very strong Buffalo Grove defense?

EDGY's Pick: Buffalo Grove 28, Maine West 21

No. 12 Barrington at New Trier, 7:30 p.m.

EDGY's Take: This Mid Suburban/Central Suburban non-conference crossover games has all the makings of being a dandy. Barrington (2-0) just seems to reload as well as anyone and senior QB Ray Niro leads the Broncos offense with both his arm and his legs this season. New Trier was stunned last Friday, losing to Warren Township 7-3 as the Trevians just couldn't get much going. Can the New Trier defense get a handle on Barrington's Ray Niro this week? Can the Trevians bounce back this week and find some more offense?

EDGY's Pick: Barrington 31, New Trier 28

No. 21 Waubonsie Valley at Neuqua Valley, 7:30 p.m.

EDGY's Take: This DuPage Valley conference showdown is always one of the best rivalry games in all of the Western suburbs and also draws a packed house. Waubonsie Valley (1-1) posted a nice 21-7 win last week over Glenbard North as the Warriors will rely on senior QB Tanner Westwood along with a veteran group of offensive weapons led by NIU commit TE Chatles Robinson. Neuqua Valley (1-1)  is looking to bounce back after a loss last Friday to Naperville Central. The Wildcats will look towards QB Jake Eskofff and RB Cameron Raupach along with a defense that can and will battle all comers. Can Waubonsie Valley's defense slow down the Nequa Valley offense? Can the Neuqua Valley defend the multiple weapons all game long from Waubonsie Valley this week?

EDGY's Pick: Waubonsie Valley 36, Neuqua Valley 35 in 2OT

Leo at Hope Academy, 7 p.m.

EDGY's Take: After losing to Niles North last Friday, Leo (1-1) is looking for a bounce back win this week under veteran head coach Michael Holmes. Hope Academy (2-0) was able to post two impressive wins (Tinley Park and St. Edward) over the past two weeks against much larger enrollment schools.

EDGY's Pick: Hope Academy 36, Leo 27

Solorio vs. Brooks, 4:15 p.m. *Viewers' Choice*

EDGY's Take: A terrific  CPL Illini crossover showdown at Gately Stadium. Solorio (2-0) is led by senior QB Quincy Patterson, an Elite 11 quarterback who is verbally committed to Virginia Tech. Also keep an eye out on senior WR/DB Isaiah Morrison for the Sun Warriors. Brooks (0-2) has some impressive underclassmen names to watch this season under head coach Benjamin McCall, including junior QB Darrin Cotton along with junior WR/S Joel Barrow. Can the Brooks defense, which has allowed 111 points in two games, slow down the Sun Warriors and QB Quincy Patterson?

EDGY's Pick: Solorio 41, Brooks 20

How to watch and/or stream the IHSA football state finals this weekend


How to watch and/or stream the IHSA football state finals this weekend

It's Thanksgiving weekend, which among other things, means the IHSA football state finals are taking place.

NBC Sports Chicago has live coverage of the finals of all eight classes and is streaming every telecast, including surrounding pre/postgame coverage, to be made available to authenticated subscribers on and via the NBC Sports app.

Check out the action taking place in Huskie Stadium in DeKalb, beginning at 10 a.m. on Friday with the Class 1A final and concluding Saturday night with the Class 8A final and a special recap edition of High School Lites following the final game. Highlights from each of the games will be available on our website throughout the weekend.

The live streaming service is currently available to customers of Comcast/Xfinity, DIRECTV, DISH Network, AT&T U-verse, Mediacom, RCN, WOW!, Time Warner Cable and Charter among numerous other carriers.  In addition, NBC Sports Chicago is also available on numerous digital streaming services including DIRECTV NOW, Hulu, fuboTV, Sling TV, CenturyLink Stream, PlayStation Vue, and YouTube TV.  For a full list of carriers and more information about NBC Sports Chicago’s live streaming service, viewers are urged to visit

Here is the full schedule for the weekend's games and broadcast coverage:

Friday, November 24

Class 1A: Lena-Winslow (Lena) 21, Tuscola 20 [HIGHLIGHTS]

Class 2A: Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley 38, Maroa-Forsyth 32 [HIGHLIGHTS]

Class 3A: IC Catholic 35, Pleasant Plains 0 [HIGHLIGHTS]

Class 4A: Rochester 24, Morris 21 [HIGHLIGHTS]

Saturday, November 25

10:00 AM – Class 5A: Phillips (Chicago) [13-0] vs. Dunlap [13-0]

1:00 PM – Class 6A: Prairie Ridge [13-0] vs. Nazareth [12-1]

4:00 PM – Class 7A: Batavia [12-1] vs. Lake Zurich [13-0] (This game will air on NBC Sports Chicago+; please visit our CHANNEL FINDER for the exact channel location in your area)

7:00 PM – Class 8A: Lincoln-Way East [13-0] vs. Loyola [12-1] (This game will air on NBC Sports Chicago+; please visit our CHANNEL FINDER for the exact channel location in your area)

Further information is available at this link. Edgy Tim previewed each of the eight games here and has players to watch for the weekend.

Previewing and predicting the IHSA State Football Championship games


Previewing and predicting the IHSA State Football Championship games

NBC Sports Chicago will have complete recaps and highlights from this weekend's IHSA State Football Championship games on High School Lites, Saturday at 11 p.m. Can anyone score when Lincoln-Way East takes on Loyola in Class 8A?  So who you got between Batavia and Lake Zurich? Can Nazareth Academy stun the defending Class 6A state champs in Prairie Ridge? Can Phillips bring home another state title trophy and beat Dunlap in 5A? Can Morris derail 4A state power Rochester? Can IC make the Cinderella story come to an end for 16 seeded Pleasant Plains in 3A? Who comes away with a win on Friday between Maroa-Forsyth and GCMS? Will it be the ground and pound Le-Win in 1A or are you more of a balanced offense fan of Tuscola?

Class 8A

Lincoln-Way East (13-0) vs. Loyola Academy (12-1) at DeKalb (Huskie Stadium) Sat., Nov. 25, 7:00 pm

EDGY's Take: Both Lincoln-Way East and Loyola feature two of the state's top defenses along with strong quarterback play. QB Brendan Morrissey (2,458 yards of total offense with 29 combined TD's) leads a balanced offensive attack that also features senior RB Ryan Scianna (696 yards rushing) plus big-play ability from sophomore WR AJ Henning. Loyola has gotten a huge senior year from QB Quinn Boyle (2,695 yards of total offense 27 combined TD's) along with a committee of running backs plus senior WR James Joyce (50 catches for 621 yards 4TD's) and senior WR Rory Boos (37 catches 743 yards 10 TD's). So whose defense rises to the occasion? How healthy is East QB Brendan Morrissey? How healthy is Loyola overall? I fully expect a very tight and one turnover or big play could be a difference maker.

EDGY's Pick: Lincoln-Way East 17 Loyola 10

Class 7A

Batavia (12-1) vs. Lake Zurich (13-0) at DeKalb (Huskie Stadium)  Sat., Nov. 25, 4:00 pm

EDGY's Take: Batavia and head coach Dennis Piron are in search of the Bulldogs' second state football title on Saturday. The Bulldogs will look toward a balanced offensive attack led by senior QB Riley Cooper (2,001 yards passing 27 touchdowns) along with a steady group of running backs along with a good sized offensive line including senior OT Nolan Eike (Central Michigan). The Batavia defense is also a big reason why they are in DeKalb on Saturday. Keep an eye on senior SS Michael Niemiec (120 tackles) along with junior ILB Luke Weerts plus junior OLB Michael Jansey. Lake Zurich and first year head coach Luke Mertens have been able to steer this football program past last year's hazing scandal and into the state title game led by a revamped offense and the always strong Bears defense. The Bears offense has opened up the passing game behind senior QB Evan Lewandowski (2,572 yards passing 26 TD's) plus a steady dose of the running game led by senior RB/LB Joey Stutzman (1,094 yards rushing 15 TD's) while the Lake Zurich defense has speed. Keep an eye on senior LB Jack Sanborn (Wisconsin commit). Can the Batavia defense lock down the Lake Zurich multi-threat offense? Can the Lake Zurich defense contain Batavia's QB Riley Cooper? 

EDGY's Pick: Lake Zurich 21 Batavia 13

Class 6A

Prairie Ridge (13-0) vs. Nazareth Academy (12-1) at DeKalb (Huskie Stadium) Sat., Nov. 25, 1:00 pm

EDGY's Take: Prairie Ridge is looking to capture its second straight Class 6A state title and the school's third overall football championship on Saturday. The Wolves will put their fate in the hands of Iowa commit senior QB Samson Evans (1,957 yards rushing 36 TD's) along with a ground hugging power option attack. The Prairie Ridge defense has experience and also plenty of speed, and keep an eye on senior OL/DL Jeff Jenkins (Iowa commit) along with senior ILB Jacob Ommen and senior OLB Joe Perhats. Nazareth Academy and head coach Tim Racki has one of Chicagoland's youngest and most talented teams in 2017. The Road Runners will look for senior QB Bobby Grimes to get the ball into the hands of several playmakers including junior RB/DB Devin Blakely plus junior WR/DB Michael Love along with junior WR/S Diamond Evans. Nazareth Academy will also look towards its defense led by senior DT Isaiah Lee (Iowa State) and a unit that has both size and speed. Can the Road Runners defense contain Superman, aka Samson Evans? Can the Prairie Ridge defense match up and defend the multiple weapons from Nazareth on Saturday?

EDGY's Pick: Nazareth Academy 35 Prairie Ridge 34

Class 5A

Chicago (Phillips) (13-0) vs. Dunlap (13-0) at DeKalb (Huskie Stadium) Sat., Nov. 25, 10:00 am

EDGY's Take: Phillips is looking to capture the school's second state football title on Saturday morning. The Wildcats will rely on their running game anchored by senior RB/LB Craig Elmore (1,814 yards rushing 22 TD's)  while the passing game is also a strength, led by QB J'Bore Gibbs (South Dakota State commit) along with a strong group of receivers including senior WR/S Fabian McCray plus junior TE Jahleel Billingsley and junior WR/DB Joseph Thompson. The Phillips defense has a great mix of size upfront, led by senior DT Queneil Morrisson (NIU commit) plus speed on the edges with senior DE Terrance Taylor (Toledo commit) and an athletic group of defensive backs. Dunlap has rolled this season behind a mix of senior RB/DB Luke Bennyhoff (2,092 yards rushing 32 TD's) along with a big play play-action passing game led by QB Myles Burks (1,526 yards passing 17 TD's) plus senior TE/LB Nick Mangieri (Northwestern commit). The Eagles defense has also been a huge key this season and the defensive line is a strength. Keep an eye on junior Josiah Miamen. Can Dunlap keep the Phillips defense off balanced? Can Phillips establish its running game on Saturday against a strong Dunlap defense? 

EDGY's Pick: Phillips 22 Dunlap 17

Class 4A

Morris (11-2) vs. Rochester (13-0) at DeKalb (Huskie Stadium), Fri., Nov. 24, 7:00 pm

EDGY's Take: Morris and head coach Alan Thorson have a strong running game featuring senior RB/LB Kam Dransfeldt (1,679 yards rushing 20 TD's) and is led by a very large offensive line anchored by senior OL Nolan Feeney and senior OT Nathan Korte. The Redskins defense also has good size and speed upfront and will look towards senior team leading  tackler LB Kaden Laurie (118 tackles) plus senior DE/TE Tyler Spiezo. Rochester and head coach Derek Leonard is attempting to win the school's six state football title in seven years on Friday evening. Rochester senior QB Nic Baker (3,678 yards passing 52 TD's) leads a fast-paced Rockets shotgun spread offense that can beat opposing defense with both the run and the pass. The Rockets defense has also been very solid all season so keep an eye on senior LB Stephan McCree (63 solo tackles) plus senior LB/RB Nick Capriotti. Can Morris take the air out of the football, control time of possession and limit the Rochester offense's touches? Can the Morris defense contain the Rochester offense for four quarters?

EDGY's Pick: Rochester 37 Morris 21

Class 3A

 Elmhurst (IC Catholic) (12-1) vs. Pleasant Plains (10-3) at DeKalb (Huskie Stadium), Fri., Nov. 24, 4:00 pm

EDGY's Take: Immaculate Conception and head coach Bill Krefft is looking for a repeat win on Friday for the 3A state title, but the path to DeKalb has been anything but easy. The Knights needed to replace standout QB Luke Ricobene after suffering a season ending injury early in the year. However the Knights reloaded quickly. Keep an eye on senior QB CJ West (1,831 yards passing 24 TD's) along with junior WR/DB Khalil Saunders and with his twin brother WR/LB Khali Saunders plus a strong running attack led by senior RB/DB Lazerick Eatman (1, 277 yards 19 TD's). Pleasant Plains had made IHSA football playoff history already as the first ever No. 16 seed in the current 1 through 16 seeded bracket to make it to the state final game. The Cardinals offense under head coach Bobby Walworth has been as balanced as they come with a strong running game featuring senior RB/LB Nik Samson (1,470 yards rushing  19 TD's) plus senior QB Ben Reinert (2,114 yards passing 25 TD's) has been extremely impressive all season. The Pleasant Plains defense is led by do it all senior LB/TE/P Tristen Tewes (129 tackles) and junior LB Jake Hermes. Can the IC defense contain the Pleasant Plains multiple weapons on offense? Can Pleasant Plains match the overall physicality from the Knights?

EDGY's Pick: Immaculate Conception 35 Pleasant Plains 21

Class 2A

Gibson City (G.C.-Melvin-Sibley) (13-0) vs. Maroa (M.-Forsyth) (12-1) at DeKalb (Huskie Stadium) , Fri., Nov. 24, 1:00 pm

EDGY's Take: GCMS and head coach Mike Allen have relied this season on a strong running game along with a speedy and athletic squad on both sides of the football. The Falcons will hand the football off to either RB Mitch McNutt (1,550 yards rushing 29 TD's) or FB Jared Trantina (828 yards rushing 15 TD's)  while QB Nathan Garard might not throw it a ton, but when he does it's usually for a big gain. The Falcons defense has been outstanding all season long having allowed just 81 points over 13 games. Keep an eye on senior LB Luke Freehill (113 tackles) plus junior DL/LB Josh Bieich for the GCMS defense. Maroa Forsyth and veteran head coach Josh Jobst are back in the state title game for the second straight season and are making their 7th appearance over the past 12 years. The Trojans possess a high octane offense led by sophomore QB Ian Brenner (2,082 yards passing 23 TD's) along with RB Deondre Gregory (1,630 yards rushing 29 TD's) plus with several speedy and sure handed receivers. The Trojans defense is anchored by senior LB Tanner Falk plus  LB Aaron Inda. Can GCMS defense continue to lock down all comers including the Maroa powerful offense on Friday? Can the Maroa defense find an answer for the GCMS one-two punch of McNutt and Trantina?

EDGY's Pick: Maroa Forsyth 27 GCMS 21

Class 1A

 Lena (L.-Winslow) (13-0) vs. Tuscola (13-0) at DeKalb (Huskie Stadium) (map), Fri., Nov. 24, 10:00 am

EDGY's Take: Lena-Winslow and head coach Ric Arand are all about ground and pound on offense while the Panthers defense has been a strength all season long led by an impressive defensive line and back seven. Look for the Panthers to get senior FB/DB Rahveon Valentine (2,025 yards rushing 25 TD's)  involved early and often while sophomore RB/OLB Sean Ormiston and senior RB/LB Gabe Schwartz are also threats running the football. Senior QB Ty Christman (25 of 36 passes for 620 yards and 12 TD's) won't throw it a ton but is more than capable of keeping opposing defenses honest with play action passes. Tuscola is yet another familiar name in the IHSA state playoff field and the Warriors are a much more balanced offensive attack. Junior QB Luke Sluder (2,991 yards of total offense 38 TD's)  is a big time threat with the run and the pass while WR Dalton Hoel (45 catches for 1010 yards and 17 TD's) is Sluder's main target in the passing game. Tuscola also has good size upfront on both sides of the football and is anchored by senior OL/DL Hunter Woodard (6-foot-5, 285 pounds), who is verbally committed to Oklahoma State. Can Le-Win continue to run the football at will? Can the Tuscola defense keep the Le-Win offense on the sidelines and allow it's offense multiple touches?

EDGY's Pick: Lena-Winslow 35 Tuscola 24