Preps Talk

47 Days to Kickoff: Huntley

47 Days to Kickoff: Huntley

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: Huntley

Head coach: Matt Zimolzak

Assistant coaches: Mike Slattery, Paul Reinke, Mike Naymola, Ben Salomon, Chris Babyar, Cliff Pawlak, Craig Kastning, Mike Sebestyen, Mike Doty, Zach Davidson, Joel Bosman, Zach Borring, Mike Sahli, Brad Aney, John Woo, Gavin Fahey, Mike Ginczycki and Jeff Beam

How they fared in 2017: 8-2 (7-1 Fox Valley Conference). Huntley made the Class 8A state playoff field and lost to Edwardsville in opening round action.

2018 Regular Season Schedule:

Aug. 24 @ McHenry

Aug. 31 vs Jacobs

Sept. 7 @ Prairie Ridge

Sept. 14 vs Cary-Grove

Sept. 21 @ Crystal Lake South

Sept. 28 vs Crystal Lake Central

Oct. 5 @ Hampshire

Oct. 12 @ Naperville North

Oct. 19 vs Dundee-Crown

[MORE: 99 Days to Kickoff - Crystal Lake South]

Biggest storyline: What is Huntley's outlook post-Eric Mooney (and others)? Can the Red Raiders reload and keep moving the football program forward in the Fox Valley and Class 8A in 2018?

Names to watch this season: WR/RB Ronel Noll and DE Nate Schupbach

Biggest holes to fill: The Red Raiders will need to replace the graduation loss of QB Eric Mooney (Northern Iowa).

EDGY's Early Take: Huntley will no question feel the graduation loss of four year varsity standout QB Eric Mooney, yet the talent level is always high at Huntley. The Red Raiders welcome back 11 returning starters (seven on defense) and will not be the only Fox Valley team looking for answers due to heavy graduation losses this past spring. I fully expect the Red Raiders to again be at or near the very top of the FVC and beyond this season.

Preseason Preps Basketball Power Rankings: No. 6 St. Viator

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NBC Sports Chicago

Preseason Preps Basketball Power Rankings: No. 6 St. Viator

St. Viator

2017-18 record: 24-6, 9-0 in the East Suburban Catholic Conference

Postseason results: Lost to Niles North in Class 4A regional finals.

Players to watch: The Division I backcourt of point guard Trey Calvin (Wright State) and guard Jeremiah Hernandez (Kent State) will be one of the best in the state this season as both players can take over a game with their scoring. Junior Connor Kochera also impressed with his shot-making ability this summer while junior Michael Huene provides size on the interior.

Why they're in the power rankings: Unbeaten in a very tough conference a year ago, St. Viator has one of the state's best backcourts and emerging juniors in Kochera and Huene. The Lions have a lot of offensive firepower with this team, as they'll be the favorite once again in the ESCC.

Did you know? St. Viator returns to Class 3A this season after spending last season in Class 4A. When the Lions were a 3A team during the 2016-17 season, they won a sectional title. 

Preseason Preps Basketball Power Rankings: No. 7 Oak Park-River Forest

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NBC Sports Chicago

Preseason Preps Basketball Power Rankings: No. 7 Oak Park-River Forest

Oak Park-River Forest

2017-18 record: 23-6, 12-0 in the West Suburban Silver

Postseason results: Lost to Lincoln Park in the Class 4A regional finals.

Players to watch: A senior-laden Huskies team returns plenty from last season's campaign. Guard Dashon Enoch has been a varsity player since freshman year while forward Charlie Hoehne, wing Anthony Roberts and guard Chase Robinson are also capable of making plays. And keep an eye on sophomore Isaiah Barnes, as he's generated Division I scholarship offers already after a good summer.

Why they're in the power rankings: With four experienced seniors returning and the addition of a potential breakout sophomore in Barnes, the Huskies are as balanced as any team in the area this season. While no one player should carry OPRF through the year, the Huskies are one of the few teams in the area with multiple players who can win them a game.

Did you know? The Huskies are coming off of back-to-back West Suburban conference titles, including an undefeated record in the conference last season.