Friday, April 29, 2011
Posted: 10:43 p.m.
By Jeremy Lynn
Jake Peavy was back on the mound Friday night for Triple-A Charlotte, and took possibly his biggest step towards making his first major-league start of 2011.
Pitching for the first time since leaving a start for Double-A Birmingham with soreness in his surgically repaired lattisimus dorsi area on April 18, Peavy threw 85 pitches, allowing three runs on eight hits including a homer. He struck out eight and walked none.
"I gave up a few runs, a two-run homer late, but I made a lot of good pitches," Peavy told the Chicago Tribune. "I couldn't feel any better stuff-wise. I thought I was much better than I've been in the past. I feel better than I have in quite some time."
Peavy is set to make another start Wednesday for Double-A Birmingham, and if all goes well he could join the White Sox rotation in time to make a start on Chicago's west coast trip that begins in Seattle and goes on to Anaheim early May 9-11.
Tarik Cohen's rookie season with the Chicago Bears was an impressive blend of running, receiving and special teams play. He quickly became a household name. The combination of his diminutive frame and oversized personality made him a fan favorite, especially when he started gaining yards in chunks.
In fact, of all running backs with a minimum of 80 carries last season, Cohen had the highest percentage of runs that were 15 or more yards, according to Pro Football Focus.
Cohen will have a big role in new coach Matt Nagy's offense this season because of everything he offers a play-caller. He's a weapon as a receiver out of the backfield and can chew up yards on the ground like any traditional running back. He's a hold-your-breath talent who can turn a bad play into a touchdown in the blink of an eye.
Cohen had 370 rushing yards, 353 receiving yards and three offensive touchdowns in what can be described as a limited role last year. John Fox and Dowell Loggains didn't seem to ever figure out how to best use Cohen's skill set. That should be no issue for Nagy and Mark Helfrich, the team's new offensive coordinator, who both bring a creative offensive approach to Chicago.
Jordan Howard will be the starter and will do most of the heavy lifting. But Cohen is going to have a much bigger role than he had as a rookie, and that should result in more big plays and points on the board.
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.
Head coach: Pat Ryan
Assistant coaches: Mike Thorgesen, Ryan Gierke, John Pavlak, Drew Sterkel, Matt Smith, Zack Martinelli, Ryan Noel, Mike Lotz, Anthony Mastropieri, Trevor McKeown and Alec Aurelio
How they fared in 2017: 7-4 (3-1 Northern Illinois Big 12 East Conference). The Knights made the Class 5A state playoff field. They defeated Lindblom, then lost to Sterling in second round action.
2018 Regular Season Schedule:
Aug. 24 @ Hinsdale South
Aug. 31 vs Geneva
Sept. 7 vs Rich Central
Sept. 14 @ Sterling
Sept. 21 vs DeKalb
Sept. 28 @ Sycamore
Oct. 5 @ Yorkville
Oct. 12 vs Morris
Oct. 19 vs Rochelle
[MORE: 95 Days to Kickoff - Waubonsie Valley]
Biggest storyline: Will the Knights leave their mark in the last season of the Northern Illinois Big 12 East conference?
Names to watch this season: RB Jonathan Alstott and OL/DL Drew Hahn.
Biggest holes to fill: The Knights will need to reload in a few key spots, especially at QB and on the O-line; however, they bring back a nice core of 11 returning starters (five offense, six defense).
EDGY's Early Take: The Knights are still in search of a new conference to call home after the 2018 season. The Northern Illinois Big 12 is in its last season under its current form. This year's Knights have a chance to get back to the state playoff field. The schedule is very tough, but this team will challenge every single week come August.