Preps Talk

45 Days to Kickoff: Joliet West

45 Days to Kickoff: Joliet West

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 Aug. 5, we’ll unveil the @NBCSPrepsTop 25 Power Rankings, leading up to kickoff on Friday, Aug. 30.

School: Joliet West

Head coach: Bill Lech

Assistant coaches: Harry Hessling, Seandell Davis, Patrick Lauer, Terry Clarke, Diondrey Hood, Kevin Kusnik, Jeff Peterson, Nick Davis, Peter Nackovic, Dan Tito and Brett Gould

How they fared in 2018: 3-6 (3-6 Southwest Prairie Conference). Joliet West failed to qualify for the IHSA state football playoff field.

2019 Regular Season Schedule:

Aug. 30 @ Minooka

Sept. 6 vs Oswego

Sept. 13 @ Oswego East

Sept. 20 vs Yorkville

Sept. 27 @ Romeoville

Oct. 4 @ Plainfield East

Oct. 11 vs Joliet Central

Oct. 18 vs Plainfield South

Oct. 25 @ Plainfield Central

Biggest storyline: Can the Tigers make more positive steps as a program as they embark on the newly-realigned Southwest Prairie conference?

Names to watch this season: OL Hunter Brooks (Sr.) and FB/LB Tom Luedke (Sr.)

Biggest holes to fill: The Tigers graduated nearly their entire starting offensive skills group from a season ago. Junior RB Trent Howland is the lone returning starter back this fall. 

EDGY's Early Take: Joliet West posted just a 3-6 record in 2018 but that record was a bit misleading on several levels. The Tigers, under then-first year head coach Bill Lech, turned the program around on a lot of levels. Joliet West came within a few plays of potentially winning four of those six losses. If the Tigers can get their offense on track early this season (against a front-loaded schedule against four Southwest Prairie West crossover opponents) they will again challenge for an IHSA state football playoff spot. 

Edgy Tim's Top 25 Preps Power Rankings: Week Three

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NBC Sports Chicago

Edgy Tim's Top 25 Preps Power Rankings: Week Three

Here are the latest @NBCSPreps Top 25 Power Rankings after three weeks of play on the IHSA schedule:

1. Lincoln-Way East 3-0 (1)
Last Week: Beat Bradley, 42-7
This Week: @ Bolingbrook
EDGY's Take: The Griffins scored touchdowns on its first six offensive possessions before halftime en route to a win against Bradley on Friday night.
  
2. Loyola Academy 2-1 (2)
Last Week: Beat St. Rita, 24-7
This Week: @ Mount Carmel
EDGY's Take: The Ramblers broke open a tight game on Saturday against the Mustangs, led by a key 49-yard field goal by Nate Van Zelst.
   
3. Nazareth Academy 2-1 (3)
Last Week: Beat Fenwick, 31-6
This Week: @ St. Laurence
EDGY's Take: Jim Harbaugh was in attendance to see the Roadrunners take care of business against Fenwick. They look to keep things rolling in Burbank against the Vikings.
  
4. Homewood-Flossmoor 3-0 (4)
Last Week: Beat Andrew, 35-14
This Week: @ Lockport
EDGY's Take: Senior QB Dominic Jones throws four touchdowns in the win over the Thunderbolts.

5. Batavia 2-1 (5)
Last Week: Beat Lake Park, 56-0
This Week: vs Glenbard North
EDGY's Take: The Bulldogs got out of the gates strong in walloping Lake Park. The Bulldogs were led by senior RB/LB Quinn Urwiler.
  
6. Warren Township 3-0 (6)
Last Week: Beat Waukegan, 56-0
This Week: @ Libertyville
EDGY's Take: The Blue Devils offense got into gear in a big way. They'll hit the road to take on Libertyville.
 
7. Mount Carmel 3-0 (9)
Last Week: Beat Montini, 27-20
This Week: vs Loyola 
EDGY's Take: The Caravan get the close win over Montini. A battle of top-10 teams is on deck for Friday night at Carey Field.

8. Glenbard West 3-0 (8)
Last Week: Beat Proviso West, 59-0
This Week: @ Addison Trail
EDGY's Take: The Hitters defense has allowed just eight points over the last two weeks.
 
9. Bolingbrook 3-0 (10)
Last Week: Beat Stagg, 43-0
This Week: vs Lincoln Way East
EDGY's Take: The Raiders will look to upset the top-ranked Griffins on Friday behind QB Devyn Suggs.

10. Providence Catholic 3-0 (24)
Last Week: Beat Brother Rice, 34-22
This Week: vs Notre Dame
EDGY's Take: Celtics junior QB Kevin Conway ran for three touchdowns in the victory over Rice.

11. Phillips 3-0 (11)
Last Week: Beat Taft, 40-7
This Week: vs Raby
EDGY's Take: The Wildcats finally got to taste some home cooking. They get their first in-state (and home) win of the season.

12. Hinsdale Central 3-0 (13)
Last Week: Beat Hinsdale South, 27-7
This Week: @ Oak Park-River Forest
EDGY's Take: The Red Devils win the Doings Cup for the 18th season in a row. The defense has been a real strength so far this season.

13. Brother Rice 2-1 (7)
Last Week: Lost to Providence, 34-22
This Week: vs Marist
EDGY's Take: The Crusaders lost to Providence but junior RB Willie Shaw showed that he's a name to watch this season.

14. Hersey 3-0 (14)
Last Week: Beat Maine East, 63-6
This Week: @ Glenbrook North
EDGY's Take: The Huskies get another big performance from QB Jordan Hansen.

15. Minooka 3-0 (15)
Last Week: Beat Plainfield East, 35-20
This Week: @ Joliet Central
EDGY's Take: The Indians win despite losing QB Seth Lehr to injury. 

16. Montini 2-1 (12)
Last Week: Lost to Mount Carmel, 27-20
This Week: vs St. Rita
EDGY's Take: The Broncos lose a close game to the Caravan and look to bounce back this Friday when they host St. Rita.

17. Oswego 3-0 (17)
Last Week: Beat Plainfield South, 34-6
This Week: @ Plainfield East
EDGY's Take: The Panthers defense forces a handful of turnovers; the offenese did the rest in a big win over Plainfield South.

18. St. Charles North 2-1 (18)
Last Week: Beat Wheaton North, 20-17
This Week: vs Geneva
EDGY's Take: The North Stars come from behind in the win over the Falcons. WR Ryan Thiesse had a big game.
 
19. Neuqua Valley 2-1 (19)
Last Week: Lost to East St. Louis, 50-48 OT
This Week: vs Dekalb
EDGY's Take: The Wildcats take the state's top ranked team to overtime. QB Mark Gronowski (South Dakota State) came up big in the loss. 

20. Barrington 2-1 (20)
Last Week: Beat New Trier, 35-0
This Week: @ Glenbrook South
EDGY's Take: The Broncos defense continues to play well in posting a second straight shutout. They'll travel to Glenview this week.

21. Maine South 1-2 (25)
Last Week: Beat Fremd, 35-21
This Week: vs Palatine
EDGY's Take: Hawks head coach Dave Inserra is moving kids all over the field trying to find a winning formula. They have lost several players to key injuries. Friday's win over Fremd could be a turning point.

22. Hillcrest 2-1 (NR)
Last Week: Beat Richards, 34-17
This Week: @ Bremen
EDGY's Take: Hillcrest head coach Mo Weaver has one of the state's top running backs in junior Mar'Kiese Irving.
 
23. Waubonsie Valley 21 (21)

Last Week: Lost to Trinity, Ky., 60-6
This Week: @ Naperville North
EDGY's Take: Yes, a 60-6 loss isn't good at all; but then again, how many top-ranked Chicagoland teams have fared well against out of state opponents? Not many. The Warriors get a mulligan here. 

24. Willowbrook 2-1 (NR)
Last Week: Beat Downers Grove South, 32-15
This Week: @ Leyden
EDGY's Take: The Warriors trailed Downers Grove South into the third quarter but rallied for the win behind QB San Tumilty.

25. Notre Dame 3-0 (NR)
Last Week: Beat Marist, 21-14
This Week: @ Providence Catholic
EDGY's Take: The Dons get a strong win over Marist. Friday's game in New Lenox should be fun. Big game at Providence.
 

High School Lites Roundup Week 3

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NBC SPORTS CHICAGO

High School Lites Roundup Week 3

High School Lites is back with an exciting Week 1 full of thrilling matchups. NBC Sports Chicago has the highlights of some of the top matchups from Friday's games.

Be sure to follow us on Twitter @NBCSPREPS for all of the latest IHSA football scores and highlights.

Drive: Phillips Episode 3

Windy City Legends: Owen Daniels

Saint Xavier Team of the Week: Niles North Football 

Wintrust Athlete of the WeekWest Aurora's Megan Sporny

Nazareth 31, Fenwick 6

Huntley 28, (16) Prairie Ridge 24

(9) Mt. Carmel 27, (12) Montini 20

Bremen 46, TF North 14

Richmond-Burton 47, Johnsburg 0

Kankakee 34, Thornwood 12

(11) Phillips 40, Taft 7

South Elgin 47, Elgin 0

Shepard 28, Reavis 17

Hoffman Estates 14, Maine West 7

#SendEDGY Game of the Week: (24) Providence 34, (7) Brother Rice 22

Viewers Choice Game of the Week: (13) Hinsdale Central 27, Hinsdale South 7