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Edgy Tim's Preps Power Rankings: Week 7

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Edgy Tim's Preps Power Rankings: Week 7

Here are the latest @NBCSPreps Top 25 Power Rankings. 

1. Lincoln-Way East 6-0 (1)
Last Week: Beat Homewood-Flossmoor, 48-6
This Week: @ Lockport
EDGY's Take: Can anyone slow down the Griffins in 2018? 

2. Nazareth Academy 6-0 (2)
Last Week: Beat Carmel, 55-17
This Week: vs Marist
EDGY's Take: It'll be a big, big test this week for the Roadrunners. Last year was ugly against Marist. Expect Nazareth to be ready for this one on Friday.

3. Batavia 6-0 (3)
Last Week: Beat Geneva, 48-0
This Week: @ St. Charles East
EDGY's Take: The Bulldogs take care of Geneva. Does this week's game at St. Charles East have "trap game" written all over it?  

4. Brother Rice 6-0 (5)
Last Week: Beat St. Rita, 21-14
This Week: @ Marmion Academy
EDGY's Take: The Crusaders snuck by rival St. Rita in a close win on Friday.

5. Mount Carmel 5-1 (6)
Last Week: Beat St. Ignatius, 49-0
This Week: vs Providence Catholic
EDGY's Take: The Caravan will look to keep rolling this week as the Celtics come to Gately Stadium.

6. Homewood-Flossmoor 5-1 (4)
Last Week: Lost to Lincoln-Way East, 48-6
This Week: @ Bradley-Bourbonnais
EDGY's Take: The Vikings will need to get back to work this week after a rough loss at Lincoln-Way East.
7. Cary-Grove 6-0 (7)
Last Week: Beat McHenry, 63-21
This Week: @ Jacobs
EDGY's Take: The Trojans' offense has been putting up big points all season long.

8. Simeon 6-0 (8)
Last Week: Beat Raby, 42-0
This Week: vs Hubbard
EDGY's Take: The Wolverines have a very good chance at winning out the remainder of the regular season, but long-time rival Hubbard stands in the way this week.

9. Marist 5-1 (9)
Last Week: Beat Marian Catholic, 42-0
This Week: @ Nazareth Academy
EDGY's Take: Can the Redhawks' defense slow down and contain Nazareth's spread offense? Can the Marist offense, led by QB Mike Markett, be its best defense this week? 

10. Maine South 5-1 (10)
Last Week: Beat Niles North, 42-7
This Week: @ Glenbrook South
EDGY's Take: Coach Dave Inserra's Maine South Hawks continue to get a big season from backup senior QB Cole Dow.
11. Oswego 6-0 (11)
Last Week: Beat Romeoville, 56-6
This Week: @ Oswego East
EDGY's Take: The Battle of Oswego is this week. You better get those tickets in advance. 

12. Glenbard West 5-1 (12)
Last Week: Beat Lyons Township, 41-7
This Week: @ Hinsdale Central
EDGY's Take: Hilltoppers senior RB Tyquan Cox is having an All-Area/All-State caliber season so far.  

13. Richards 6-0 (13)
Last Week: Beat Argo, 50-0
This Week: vs Lemont
EDGY's Take: The Bulldogs look forward to taking on South Suburban crossover rival Lemont this week.
14. Phillips 4-2 (14)
Last Week: Beat Curie, 42-0
This Week: @ Lane Tech
EDGY's Take: The Wildcats defense has allowed just six points over the last three weeks.

15. Willowbrook 6-0 (15)
Last Week: Beat York, 28-14
This Week: vs Morton
EDGY's Take: The Warriors are now 6-0 for the first time since 2000.

16. Naperville Central 4-2 (16)
Last Week: Beat Naperville North, 50-21
This Week: vs Neuqua Valley
EDGY's Take: The Redhawks offense is clicking behind QB Payton Thorne.
17. Bolingbrook 5-1 (17)
Last Week: Beat Lockport, 39-7
This Week: @ Thornridge
EDGY's Take: The Raiders take care of Lockport and will take on Thornridge in a rare Thursday game this week in Dolton. 

18. Montini 6-0 (18)
Last Week: Beat Loyola, 28-27
This Week: @ Fenwick
EDGY's Take: The "never-say-quit" Broncos trailed Loyola 21-0 but fought their way back to victory. It was Montini's first-ever win over Loyola.
19. Hinsdale Central 5-1 (19)
Last Week: Beat Proviso West, 47-8
This Week: vs Glenbard West
EDGY's Take: The Red Devils will get a big test on Friday against the Hilltoppers.
20. Stevenson 5-1 (20)
Last Week: Beat Mundelein, 43-0
This Week: vs Waukegan
EDGY's Take: The Patriots are back on a roll. But more tests await, including this Friday at they host the Bulldogs.

21. New Trier 5-1 (23)
Last Week: Beat Evanston, 35-28
This Week: @ Niles North
EDGY's Take: The Trevians get a big boost from injured RB Brian Sitzer in their win over rival Evanston on Friday.
22. St. Charles North 5-1 (NR)
Last Week: Beat St. Charles East, 28-7
This Week: @ Glenbard North
EDGY's Take: The North Stars have also gotten a nice season so far from sophomore QB Kyler Brown as North topped East last in the annual "Battle of St. Charles."

23. Hillcrest 6-0 (24)
Last Week: Beat Tinley Park, 59-0
This Week: @ T.F. South
EDGY's Take: A lot of people seem to be sleeping on the Hawks. Don't be one of them. 

24. Notre Dame 5-1 (NR)
Last Week: Beat St. Viator, 28-0
This Week: @ St. Patrick
EDGY's Take: The Dons now square off against bitter longtime rival St. Pats this Friday at Triton College. 

25. Neuqua Valley 4-2 (NR)
Last Week: Beat Waubonsie Valley, 47-16
This Week: @ Naperville Central
EDGY's Take: The Wildcats get a nice win over rival Waubonsie Valley, but now comes another tough test at Naperville Central.

67 Days to Kickoff: Kaneland

67 Days to Kickoff: Kaneland 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: Kaneland

Head coach: Pat Ryan

Assistant coaches: Ryan Gierke, Mike Thorgesen, Drew Sterkel, John Pavlak, Matt Smith, Ryan Noel, Zach Martinelli, Isaiah Baerenklau, Alec Aurelio, Trevor McKeown and Mike Lotz

How they fared in 2018: 7-4 (3-1 Northern Illinois Big 12 East Conference). Kaneland made the Class 6A state playoff field, defeated Von Steuben then lost to Cary-Grove in second round action. 

2019 regular season schedule:

Aug. 30 vs Hinsdale South
Sept. 6 @ Geneva
Sept. 13 vs Sycamore
Sept. 20 @ Sandwich
Sept. 27 @ Rochelle
Oct. 4 @ Plano
Oct. 11 vs Ottawa
Oct. 18 @ Morris
Oct. 25 vs La Salle-Peru

[MORE: 96 Days to Kickoff - Morris]

Biggest storyline: A drive on Interstate Eight. Can the Knights keep rolling in their new conference?

Names to watch this season: QB Joe Smith (Sr.), WR/KR Max Gagne (Sr.), OL/DL Sam Pryor (Sr.)

Biggest holes to fill: The Knights welcome back several returning starters but the loss of RB Jonathon Alstott (graduation) will need to be accounted for this fall. 

EDGY's Early Take: The Knights will look to make the IHSA playoffs for the 22nd time in the past 25 seasons, but the big storyline this year is the Interstate Eight Conference. Kaneland had a very successful run in the now-defunct Northern Illinois Big 12 East. Will the momentum continue? The Knights will welcome back 13 returning starters (eight offense, four defense). The offense may need to help out a less-experienced defense, especially early on this season. Kaneland is about as battle-tested as anyone coming from the Northern Illinois Big 12 East. Look for the the Knights to challenge for a conference title in 2019. 

College coaches flock to Illinois as state benefits from new June live evaluation period


College coaches flock to Illinois as state benefits from new June live evaluation period

College basketball's renovated recruiting calendar had a lot of people skeptical. 

The newly-appointed June live evaluation period would theoretically allow college coaches to evaluate high school prospects with their high school teams instead of their AAU teams. The period also limited the number of players who could even be seen.

Which left Illinois in a unique position entering the first June scholastic evaluation period of the modern recruiting era this past weekend.  

With only 29 total events in 20 different states -- plus select teams from surrounding states -- over two weekends, there weren't a lot of events for college coaches to choose from. The NCAA's hastily-appointed June period also imposed limitations bounded by its rulebook and association with the NFHS. 

However, the new rules didn't hinder anything for high school players from Illinois. With an astounding six of the 29 June-period events for the month, Illinois high school basketball players will be seen by more college coaches than any other state during this month's live evaluation period.   

Since the IHSA already allowed (and encouraged) summer basketball during the month of June, Illinois high school players are accustomed to being with their scholastic teams in shootouts, college team camps and summer leagues during the month. The infrastructure was also in place for well-run events -- some already going for decades -- to easily allow for college coaches to come in and watch competitive high school events.

Most-importantly, it generated dozens of scholarship offers for the state's high school players as Riverside-Brookfield, Zion-Benton and other schools hosted hundreds of Illinois high school games during the first of two live-period weekends this past weekend.   

Other states scrambled to put together camps or tournaments for college coaches to watch their high school players. For some, football or baseball is the focus for June while basketball isn't even an option during the summer in certain states.  

California, New York, Florida and Texas all chose not to host June basketball events for college coaches. North Carolina is among a group of states where public and private schools operate under different state associations. So only certain schools could participate in June events.

While other states like Georgia and the West Coast's Section 7 in Arizona also created positive reviews for quality June events, the well-known Riverside-Brookfield Shootout, along with the newly-created Illinois/Wisconsin Border Battle event at Zion-Benton, drove hundreds of Division I college coaches to Illinois.

And those college coaches saw some very competitive games at Riverside-Brookfield that gave them a unique evaluation perspective. 

Illinois high school teams have been playing together most of the month, the games were more crisp at certain times than other places as college coaches had good things to say about the level of play here compared to other events. The Riverside-Brookfield final day, in particular, drew positive reviews for the level of competition as teams went hard during bracket play.

Star senior talents like Whitney Young's D.J Steward and Tyler Beard helped entice high-major coaches to attend the event which led to junior talents like Fenwick's Bryce Hopkins and Notre Dame's Louis Lesmond earning high-major scholarship offers. Mid- and low-major coaches also descended on Illinois from all over the country as senior standouts picked up waves of scholarship offers. 

College coaches at all levels also got to evaluate and get early looks at younger players in the state -- some of them rising freshmen who just joined the team this month. Some freshmen and sophomores created strong future impressions for later recruiting classes as college coaches follow up with them in the future.

All of these same players will still have an opportunity to play in front of college coaches next weekend when Ridgewood and Rockford both host additional Illinois high school events. More offers should be handed out by then as certain colleges will make Illinois players a priority to watch the rest of the summer.  

June also gives Illinois players a head start for the July evaluation period since college coaches can see who is worth keeping an eye on while also adding new recruitable players to their lists.

Overall, Illinois benefits from the new NCAA June period more than any other state this summer. The opening weekend was attended by hundreds of college coaches and was a huge success. Only nine total events will be played during the second weekend as Illinois should get many more coaches inside the state in the coming days.