Preps Talk

CSN Preps Power Rankings: No. 13 Joliet Catholic

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CSN Preps Power Rankings: No. 13 Joliet Catholic

CSNChicago.com is your top destination on the road to the 2015 high school football season. CSN preps contributor “Edgy” Tim O’Halloran will take a look at 100 teams in 100 days, counting down to the opening night kickoff on Aug. 28.

No. 13 Joliet Catholic Hilltoppers

2014 record: 8-3 (6-1) finished second in the East Suburban Catholic Conference Conference. The Hilltoppers beat St. Laurence then lost to Montini Catholic in Class 5A second-round action.

Why did the Hilltoppers make the @CSNPreps Power Rankings? The Hilltoppers return a big and very strong experienced starting offensive line from last season, along with several skill position players back in the fold.

Areas of concern heading into the 2015 season? Can the Hillmen stay healthy? The overall talent level is high, but the overall depth and numbers are lower than usual at JCA.

[MORE PREPS: CSN Preps Power Rankings - No. 14 Montini Catholic]

It will be a good season if: The Hilltoppers avoid injuries and the offensive line knocks the snot out of all-comers.

Headliners? Senior defensive tackle Ken Aguirre, senior guard Zeveyon Furcron and senior offensive lineman Tyler Witt are all Division I recruits.

Biggest game of 2015? Oct. 9 vs. Nazareth Academy. The Hillmen, no question, gave the Roadrunners its best game during a run to the 2014 Class 6A title — a 24-21 Nazareth win in front of a packed house. Expect more of the same, but this time at Joliet Memorial Stadium.

Did you know? Joliet Catholic has had its season end at the hands of Montini every year since 2011. The Broncos were moved up to Class 6A this fall, compliments of the newly installed IHSA's Success Factor rule.

34 Days to Kickoff: Bartlett

34 Days to Kickoff: Bartlett

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: Bartlett


Head coach: Mark Erlenbaugh


How they fared in 2017: 2-7 (2-3 Upstate 8 Valley Conference), Bartlett failed to qualify for the 20127 IHSA state football playoff field.
2018 Regular Season Schedule:
Aug. 25 @ East Aurora
Aug. 31 vs Glenbard East
Sept 8 vs Glenbard South
Sept. 14 @ Elgin
Sept. 21 @ West Aurora
Sept. 28 vs West Chicago
Oct. 5 vs Larkin
Oct. 13 @ South Elgin 
Oct. 19 @ Streamwood


Biggest storyline: Can the Hawks soar in the newly realigned Upstate 8 conference?


Names to watch this season: QB Dean Kotsovetis WR Austin Gates


Biggest holes to fill: The Hawks will need to fill in several spots this summer especially upfront on the offensive and defensive lines due to graduation losses.


EDGY's Early Take: Bartlett new head coach Matt Erlenbaugh comes in from Chicago Solorio and takes over the Hawks football program. Look for Bartlett to have a chance to challenge in the newly realigned Upstate 8 schedule. The Hawks schedule this season won't include the likes of several 2017 state playoff teams like Lemont, Prairie Ridge and St. Charles East.

35 Days to Kickoff: Oak Forest

35 Days to Kickoff: Oak Forest

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: Oak Forest

Head coach: Brian McDonough

How they fared in 2017: 4-5 (3-3 South Suburban Conference). Oak Forest failed to qualify for the IHSA state football playoff field.

2018 Regular Season Schedule:

Aug. 24 vs Pekin
Aug. 31 @ Niles Notre Dame
Sept. 7 @ T.F. South
Sept. 14 @ Hillcrest
Sept. 21 @ Eisenhower
Sept. 28 vs T.F. North
Oct. 5 vs Tinley Park
Oct. 12 @ Bremen
Oct. 19 vs Lemont

Biggest storyline: Can the Bengals get back into the IHSA state playoffs this season?

Names to watch this season: LB Anthony Kluk and OL/DL Julian Ramirez

Biggest holes to fill: The Bengals will need to reload on both sides of the football especially on offense with the graduation losses of several starters including QB Tyler Morrison and RB Waitari Wilson.

EDGY's Early Take: It was a rare season for the Bengals in 2017, having missed the IHSA state playoff field for the first time since 1999. Look for Oak Forest to rely on its defense while a newer group on offense develops. The Bengals and veteran head coach Brian McDonough will need to get out to a good early start with a front-loaded regular season schedule.