Oswego

CSN Preps Preseason Power Rankings: No. 15 New Trier

CSN Preps Preseason Power Rankings: No. 15 New Trier

CSNChicago.com preps reporter "Edgy" Tim O'Halloran spotlights 100 high school football teams in 100 days. The first 75 team profiles will focus on teams making strides across Chicagoland and elsewhere in the state. Starting Jul. 31, we'll unveil the @CSNPreps Top 25 Power Rankings, leading up to kickoff on Friday, Aug. 25.

School: New Trier

Head coach: Brian Doll

Assistant coaches: Jason Dane (defensive coordinator), Mike Napoleon (special teams coordinator), Bill Morrison, Tom Hessling, Bob Spagnoli, Bob Bollweg, Mike Harrison, Pete Collins , Joe Chiodo

How they fared in 2016: 10-1 (9-0 Southwest Prairie Conference), made the Class 8A state playoff field, beat Joliet West then lost to Edwardsville.

[MORE: CSN Preps Preseason Power Rankings - No. 16 Oswego]

2017 regular season schedule:

Aug. 25 vs. York

Sept. 1 @ Warren Township

Sept. 8 vs. Barrington

Sept. 16 @ Conant

Sept. 22 vs. Niles West

Sept. 28 @ Evanston

Oct. 7 vs. Niles North

Oct. 13 vs. Maine South

Oct. 20 @ Glenbrook South

Biggest storyline: Can the Trevians win back- to-back Central Suburban South titles and also make a deep run in 8A?

Names to watch this season: senior TE Brian Kaiser, junior TE/DE Duke Olges

Biggest holes to fill: New Trier will need to replace starters from a season ago at key spots, including quarterback and linebacker.

EDGY's early take: New Trier was able to finally beat rival Maine South last season, snapping the Hawks' 77-game winning streak, along with winning the Central Suburban South conference crown. With an offense featuring seven returning starters, plus talent up and down the roster, look for the Trevians to again be a real challenger in the conference and Class 8A this season.

CSN Preps Preseason Power Rankings: No. 16 Oswego

CSN Preps Preseason Power Rankings: No. 16 Oswego

CSNChicago.com preps reporter "Edgy" Tim O'Halloran spotlights 100 high school football teams in 100 days. The first 75 team profiles will focus on teams making strides across Chicagoland and elsewhere in the state. Starting Jul. 31, we'll unveil the @CSNPreps Top 25 Power Rankings, leading up to kickoff on Friday, Aug. 25.

School: Oswego

Head coach: Brian Cooney

How they fared in 2016: 10-1 (9-0 Southwest Prairie Conference), made the Class 8A state playoff field, beat Joliet West then lost to Edwardsville.

[MORE: CSN Preps Preseason Power Rankings: No. 17 Hinsdale Central]

2017 regular season schedule:

August 25th vs Minooka

September 1st @ Plainfield North

September 8th vs Joliet West

September 16th @ Plainfield East

September 22nd vs Romeoville

September 29th vs Oswego East

October 7th @ Joliet Central

October 13th vs Plainfield South

October 20th @ Plainfield Central

Biggest storyline: Can the Panthers stay on top of the Southwest Prairie and make a deep run in Class 8A?

Names to watch this season: Senior OL/DL Noah Shannon and Senior DB Josh Shodipo 

Biggest holes to fill: Oswego needs to fill a few key spots, including receiver and along the offensive line.

EDGY's Early Take: Oswego has won the Southwest Prairie conference title every season since 2011. The Panthers face several tough tests but they are still the team to beat. Look for Oswego to rely on a very talented defense and a punishing running game, balanced out by senior QB Levi Olson's play-action passing abilities. Senior OL/DL Noah Shannon (Iowa) is an All-State caliber name to watch. Keep an eye on senior DB Josh Shodipo, senior DB Julian Bell and junior RB Charles Coleman as well.
 

Recruiting News and Notes: Justin Hall commits to NIU

justinhall.jpg

Recruiting News and Notes: Justin Hall commits to NIU

Justin Hall (ATH), Homewood-Flossmoor

Northern Illinois University landed its ninth in-state verbal commitment when Homewood-Flossmoor senior athlete Justin Hall (5-foot-10, 170 pounds) decided to stay closer to home and commit to the Huskies.

"I just really interacted well with the coaches as well as the players at NIU," Hall said. "It's really a family feeling in the football program at NIU and I just always have felt comfortable there. I was looking to also stay closer to home and it all just came together for me at NIU. I can stay closer to home and play for a team that has had a lot of success. NIU also offers a good education and it just feels like the best fit for me so I committed."

Hall, who was recruited by NIU head coach Rod Carey as a defensive back, can also return kicks and punts and plans to contribute to the Huskies return teams. Hall joins his Homewood-Flossmoor teammate in defensive linemen Jeff Griffin, Andrew defensive end Mike DeHaan, Decatur MacArthur wide receiver Amir Brummett, Phillips defensive tackle Queneil Morrison, Palatine outside linebacker Cortez Hogans, Simeon wide receiver Leon Payne, Rich Central athlete Jyran Mitchell and Maine South running back Fotis Kokosioulis in the NIU in-state Class of 2018. 

Brett Groves (OT), Cary-Grove

Cary-Grove senior offensive tackle Brett Groves (6-foot-5, 305 pounds) decided last week to end his recruiting process and give Southern Illinois head coach Nick Hill his verbal commitment.

"It was ready to make my decision so I called up coach Hill and gave SIU my verbal commitment," Groves aid. "I never had any set date to make my decision but with the start of practices I wanted to make my decision so I can focus on my team and my season."

Groves, who also was drawing recruiting looks from FBS schools such as Iowa State and NIU, decided he didn't want to pass up his opportunity at Southern Illinois.

"SIU just has a lot to offer. I really get a long great with the coach. Both coach Hill and coach (Trevor) Olson are good people and also very good coaches. I like the direction that the football program is headed. SIU also has a great looking campus and I just really like the surrounding area. SIU is a bit of a smaller school but still has that bigger school feel. I was also impressed with the facilities at SIU along with the academic support for athletes. I know that I'll get a good education at SIU. It's just the best for me."

Josh Shodipo (DB), Oswego

Oswego senior defensive back Josh Shodipo (5-foot-11, 165 pounds) also decided to make his college decision before the opening of team practice and give Western Illinois University his verbal commitment.

"My recent visit was a big reason why I decided to commit to WIU," Shodipo said. "WIU is a good school and I already know some people going to school there. I really like the coaches at WIU along with the players. I'm also a good fit into the WIU defense. They recruited me as a corner back but the coaches also feel I could also play some safety for them. The visit to WIU just made me feel really comfortable with the school along with the coaches and the team. WIU feels like home to me."

Jayleen Fitzpatrick (LB), Glenbard North

No one was as happy to see the official start of IHSA football practices last Monday than Glenbard North senior linebacker Jayleen Fitzpatrick (6-foot-0, 205 pounds). Fitzpatrick, who suffered an 2016 early season-ending injury, is back and 100 percent ready to go.

"I am so ready to go," Fitzpatrick said. "I'm like overly excited for the season. It's been a lot of work and rehab to get back but now I'm back."

Fitzpatrick, who will be one of the leaders for the Panthers defense this fall, will draw several college coaches attention and serious looks at his early senior year game video.

"This month I've been in touch with a lot of different schools and they all want to know when I was cleared and back with the team. I've been talking to some DII schools like Grand Valley State and the University of Indianapolis, plus some smaller schools like UW Whitewater. They all want to see some of my senior tape."