Preps Talk

Konerko has mild concussion, could be placed on DL

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Konerko has mild concussion, could be placed on DL

White Sox captain Paul Konerko missed Wednesdays game with a mild concussion and could potentially land on the seven-day disabled list.

The first baseman wasnt in the clubhouse before or after Wednesdays game. Konerko was hit in the right temple inadvertently by the elbow of Kansas Citys Jarrod Dyson in the seventh inning of Tuesdays loss.

Prior to the game, White Sox manager Robin Ventura said Konerko was out of the lineup with general soreness, but said he was available to play if needed.

Afterward, Ventura said Konerko had a mild concussion and needs further evaluation on Thursday. Ventura didnt dismiss the possibility for Konerko to go on the seven-day DL. Major League Baseball established the seven-day DL stint for concussions before the start of the 2011 season.

There have been some serious things with concussions, Ventura said. I dont know if its (that bad), but he does have a mild one so it was more of a precaution to keep him out. No way could he have played tonight.

Konerko is hitting .316 with 18 homers and 54 RBIs in 101 games this season. Both he and outfielder Alex Rios were absent for a 2-1 loss to the Royals on Wednesday.

It stinks for Paulie, catcher A.J. Pierzynski said. Hopefully he'll be better fast. As soon as it gets in the head area you dont want to mess with it. Hopefully he'll come in Friday, say he's feeling better and will be ready to go.

The White Sox are off on Thursday, which will give Konerko an extra day of rest. Konerko was not spotted in the dugout during the game. Ventura said Konerko was in the White Sox clubhouse during the game.

Giving two days to anybody is beneficial so hopefully its not too serious, first baseman Adam Dunn said.

66 Days to Kickoff: Rich Central

66 Days to Kickoff: Rich Central

NBCSportsChicago.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 July 30, we’ll unveil the @NBCSPrepsTop 25 Power Rankings, leading up to kickoff on Friday, Aug. 24.

School: Rich Central

Head coach: Terrell Alexander

Assistant Coaches: Quincy Woods (OC), Vince Brown (OL), Art Schuldt (ST), Les Hampton (DB), Jerrell Bibbs (DB), Steve Henley (DC), Jeff Spikner (WR), Derrick Goard (LB) William Pass (DL) Chuch Robinson (Skills), Guy Smith (RB) and Shawn Mitchell (Skills)

How they fared in 2017: 8-3 (4-1 Southland Conference). Rich Central made the Class 5A state football playoff field. The Olympians defeated Marion then lost to Dunlap in second round.

2018 Regular Season Schedule:

Aug. 24 @ Hillcrest

Sept. 1 vs Lemont

Sept. 7 @ Kaneland

Sept. 14 vs Rich South

Sept. 21 @ Crete-Monee

Sept. 28 vs Rich East

Oct. 5 vs Kankakee

Oct. 12 vs Bloom Township

Oct. 19 vs Christ the King

[MORE: 67 Days to Kickoff: Hillcrest]

Biggest storyline: The Olympians have reached the IHSA playoffs three consecutive seasons-- the first such streak in Rich Central history. Can they stay on a winning track and make a deeper playoff run this fall?

Names to watch this season: WR/S Mehki Miller (Miami of Ohio) and RB Sean Tyler (Western Michigan)

Biggest holes to fill: The Olympians will need to replace their entire starting offensive line from a season ago.

EDGY's Early Take: Rich Central and head coach Terrell Alexander has brought winning and stability to the Olympians football program.  The 2018 team has some firepower back in the aforementioned Miller and Tyler; however, the development of their underclassmen group this summer will determine just how far this team will go. The ingredients look to be there for another IHSA state playoff caliber team.

Maurice Jones-Drew ranks Jordan Howard in NFL's top-10 RBs

Maurice Jones-Drew ranks Jordan Howard in NFL's top-10 RBs

Chicago Bears RB Jordan Howard is entering an interesting season. He has just as good a chance of leading the NFL in rushing as he appears to have at losing reps to Tarik Cohen, a player some analysts feel is a better fit for coach Matt Nagy's system.

It's unfortunate that Howard isn't receiving the kind of praise a player like him deserves. He set the Bears' rookie rushing record with 1,313 yards in 2016. In 2017, he became the first running back in franchise history to start a career with back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons.

Howard's production suggests he should be the feature back in Chicago's ground game. In fact, according to NFL Network's Maurice Jones-Drew, it's a no-brainer. He recently ranked Howard in the NFL's top-10 running backs.

7. Jordan Howard (Bears)

Even with the plethora of offensive weapons thanks to some offseason additions, the Bears' offense still must run through Howard. After rushing for at least 1,100 yards in each of his first two seasons, Howard will be a key piece for first-year head coach Matt Nagy and will have to carry Chicago late in the season if the squad is going to make a playoff push.

Howard will be given every chance to prove he can thrive in Nagy's system early in the season. If he can prove reliable as a receiver, he could match Kareem Hunt's league-leading 1,327 yards last season. He'll have to be effective as a pass-catcher to keep Cohen from threatening for more touches.

Howard deserves this kind of respect for what he's done through two seasons as a pro. He may not be in the NFL's elite class just yet, but if he surpasses 1,200-plus rushing yards and threatens for 10 or more touchdowns again, it'll be an undeniable fact that Howard is a true franchise back.