Preps Talk

Morgan Park's Ayo Dosunmu makes All-American statement at NBPA Top 100 Camp


Morgan Park's Ayo Dosunmu makes All-American statement at NBPA Top 100 Camp

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- The goal for Ayo Dosunmu entering the NBPA Top 100 Camp was simple. 

Already regarded as the top high school basketball player in the Illinois rising senior class, the Morgan Park guard made it his personal mission to dominate the other point guards in his class at the camp while elevating his stock for next year's McDonald's All-American Game.

The Land of Lincoln hasn't had a representative in high school basketball's marquee all-star game the last two years. Dosunmu is determined to change that. 

Based on his stellar play at national camps during the month of June, Dosunmu has now put himself in serious position to be a Burger Boy if he continues to trend in this type of direction.

"That's my goal," Dosunmu told CSN Chicago about the McDonald's Game.

"I like to play fearless and just come out and compete. At the end of the day, these top 100 players across the country, it's a measuring stick. So I just try to come out here and compete hard."

One of the camp's elite scorers over the course of four days at the University of Virginia, Dosunmu went head-to-head against a who's who of elite national point guards. It seemed like every matchup Dosunmu played in, he had to compete against another top-50 national prospect also gunning for higher national status. 

As one of the camp's leading scorers at 13.3 points per game, Dosunmu certainly made his impact felt. Shooting 61 percent from the floor, Dosunmu was nearly impossible to contain off-the-dribble as he did pretty much whatever he wanted going to the rim. Also knocking down six of his first seven three-pointers at the event, Dosunmu also showed an improved perimeter jumper that he's been working on thanks to around 500 shots a day that he's been taking.

In one particularly memorable battle against five-star point guard Immanuel Quickley -- the highest-rated point guard in the camp -- Dosunmu more than held his own as he played the Baltimore native to a relative draw. Things also got chippy between the two. That usually doesn't happen in national camp settings. 

But Dosunmu and Quickley had to be warned by officials for physical play just over a minute into the game. After numerous possessions that involved bumps, subtle jabs, borderline arm-bars and icey staredowns, Dosunmu and Quickley were both whistled for a double technical foul during the second half. Of the 12 games watched by CSN at the camp, they were the only techs whistled the entire time.

Quickley tried to punk Dosunmu a bit by seeing if physical play would bother him, but Dosunmu responded with 10 points on 4-for-8 shooting. Dosunmu opened a lot of eyes nationally with the way he played against Quickley. 

"I want to come out and compete and just go at everybody who is ahead of me," Dosunmu said. "Show that there's no friends on the court. And to let people know I'm coming for them."

"The play of Ayo Dosunmu at the camp should not have come as a surprise as he has continued his ascent up the charts as an elite, top-25 recruit," national recruiting analyst Corey Evans told CSN. "Leaving Virginia, Dosunmu has solidified his standing as a top point guard prospect in 2018. And thanks to his competitive grit, he has the chance to continue to rise within the rankings."

While Dosunmu has been busy traveling all over the country during a busy June national camp season -- he also played in the prestigious Pangos All-American Camp outside of Los Angeles earlier in the month -- he's also trying to navigate an increasingly hectic recruiting schedule.

Kansas recently stepped up with a scholarship offer for Dosunmu while schools like Creighton, Illinois, N.C. State, Northwestern, Wake Forest and Xavier remain heavily in the picture. Dosunmu is also open to other schools entering the mix as he hasn't formed any kind of cut list.

The next few months, Dosunmu is hoping to take unofficial visits to see most of the schools currently involved for him as he starts with a scheduled unofficial visit to Illinois and new head coach Brad Underwood on Tuesday.

Dosunmu has been to the Illinois campus once before, and Illini assistant coach Ronald "Chin" Coleman has recruited him for a few years while he was an assistant at UIC, but Dosunmu is hoping to get a better feel for what Underwood is about during the visit.

"Coach Underwood and Coach Coleman, they've been wanting me to get up there a long time, take a visit there," Dosunmu said of Illinois. 

"I just want to be able to sit down and talk with Coach Underwood about the future. What he would have planned for me if I come there. I knew Coach Coleman for a long time; he offered me at UIC. But, yeah, Coach Underwood, I have to sit down and talk to and build a better relationship with him. And overall, just feel the vibe that we have. And if the vibe connects, then at the end of the day, that could be very possible that I go there."

Things are moving very quickly for Dosunmu right now, both on and off the court, but this is also the start of an important summer that will test him with unique challenges nearly every week.

After June comes the all-important July live evaluation period as Dosunmu will have a chance to play in front of college coaches and national scouts at more national events. 

Knowing that there's an even bigger target on his back doesn't seem to bother Dosunmu one bit. He's thriving under the pressure and enjoying everything that's happening during his coast-to-coast mission to earn national respect.

"I feel like there's a bullseye on my back. But the way I motivate myself is to always put a bullseye on somebody else's back," Dosunmu said. "I always take motivation from somebody else. So if somebody is chasing me, I'm chasing someone else. It's always a race."

De La Salle's Joe Bonds ready and excited for the chapter of his football career


De La Salle's Joe Bonds ready and excited for the chapter of his football career

Chicago De La Salle senior linebacker Joe Bonds (6-foot-3, 210 pounds) and soon-to-be NIU Huskie will have zero problems fitting into the "The Hard Way" mantra once he reports to DeKalb this summer.

I had a chance to catch up with Bonds and his teammates at the sixth annual Franklin Middle School Dodgeball Tournament in Wheaton. Proceeds from the event benefited the Northern Illinois Food Bank, Cammy Can, Jack’s Army and Franklin Middle School.

Bonds, a three-star inside linebacker is one of several Chicagoland headline names who comprised of a very strong NIU recruiting 2018 class.

Bonds, who signed with the Huskies over offers from multiple FBS level schools, looks ahead and discusses his soon to be transition from De La Salle to college football and more.

What to watch for in this weekend's state-title hockey game between Loyola Academy and Stevenson

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What to watch for in this weekend's state-title hockey game between Loyola Academy and Stevenson

A state champion will be crowned Saturday at the United Center, when Loyola Academy Gold plays Stevenson for the Boys Red Division State Championship.

Here are some of the storylines we’re watching ahead of the game.

1. Coaching connection: These two coaches have known each other for more than 20 years. Loyola head coach D.J. LaVarre coached against Stevenson head coach Tom Wood when Wood played youth hockey. LaVarre also knows Tom’s dad, Jim, who is the former head coach at Stevenson. Currently the coach Stevenson’s JV 2 team, Jim won the AHAI high school coach of the year in 2007.

2. Fun rewards for players of the game: At Stevenson, the player of the game is awarded a hard hat. At Loyola, it’s a championship belt.

3. International influence: Stevenson’s goalie, Elias Sandholm, is a transfer student from Sweden and has the highest save percentage in school history, .951. He made the all-state team and the Chicago Showcase team.

4. Next man up: In net for Loyola will most likely be Hugh Brady, a senior who stepped up when Thomas Moran went down with a hip injury. Brady has played 47 games and has a .945 save percentage.

5. A drought will be snapped: Stevenson has never won a state championship. Loyola is looking for its first since 1996.

Puck drop is at 3 p.m., with the girls’ state championship game, Glenbrook vs. New Trier, starting at 11:30 a.m.

One more fun note: Team USA gold medalist and Palos Heights native Kendall Coyne will drop the ceremonial puck prior to both games.