Preps Talk

Former Lincoln-Way QB Cory Paus addresses 2016 Drive team

Former Lincoln-Way QB Cory Paus addresses 2016 Drive team

On the first day of summer camp, the Lincoln-Way East football team was surprised with the announcement that they had been chosen as this year's Drive team.

Head coach Rob Zvonar also had another surprise for his team later that day. Former Lincoln-Way quarterback Cory Paus spoke with the team about his experiences in high school, winning a state championship and playing collegiately and professionally.

"I have a great relationship with Coach Z, so I just wanted to talk to the kids, try to get them a little fired up for their summer workouts. I just love talking to kids and always have, and haven't gotten a chance to come back here for a few years so I was taking the opportunity."

Paus was a three-year starter for Lincoln-Way from 1995 to 1997 following a freshman season played under Zvonar. In those three years he compiled a 34-4 record, advanced to the state title game in 1996 and won a state championship as a senior in 1997.

In those final two seasons, Paus threw for more than 4,300 yards and 50 touchdowns and became one of the top quarterback recruits in the country.

He committed to UCLA, where he threw for 6,730 yards and 41 touchdowns in four seasons. He had a tryout with the San Diego Chargers in 2002 and played professionally in Canada the following year before retiring.

"Really back in 1997 it was unheard of for the Pac-10 or UCLA to come to the Midwest and take a kid, and he's a top three to five quarterback in the nation as a senior," Zvonar said. "Couldn't be more proud of the career that he had. Cory Paus kind of put Lincoln-Way football on the map, and for him to come back this many years later and talk to this group, we greatly appreciate it."

Hear more of what Paus had to say in his speech to the team in the video above.

91 Days to Kickoff: Joliet Catholic

91 Days to Kickoff: Joliet Catholic

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: Joliet Catholic Academy

Head coach: Jake Jaworski

Assistant coaches: Dave Douglas, Cory McLaughlin, Chris Kinsella, Mark Mettille, Jake Ziesmer, Zach Dolph, Josh Greenback and Craig Slowik

How they fared in 2017: 3-6 (2-5 East Suburban Catholic Conference). JCA failed to make the 2017 IHSA state playoff field.

2018 Regular Season Schedule:

Aug. 24 vs. St. Rita

Aug. 31 @ IC Catholic Prep

Sept. 7 @ St. Viator

Sept. 14 vs. Carmel

Sept. 21 @ Marist

Sept. 28 vs. Benet Academy

Oct. 5 vs. Marian Catholic

Oct. 12 @ Nazareth Academy

Oct. 19 @ Notre Dame

Biggest storyline: Can Joliet Catholic snap a two-year hiatus from the state football playoffs?

Names to watch this season: OT Dave Monnot and RB Kenyetta Williams

Biggest holes to fill: The Hilltoppers will need to reload at the quarterback and wide receiver positions. 

EDGY's Early Take: It's been a rough few seasons at one of the state's best football programs. That said, 2018 has the potential to be the turnaround year the Hilltoppers have been looking for. Second-year head coach Jake Jaworski will feature four big and experienced offensive linemen, led by senior OT Dave Monnot (6-foot-6, 287 pounds). They also have a name to watch in junior-to-be RB Kenyetta Williams. If Joliet Catholic can survive another challenging early season non-conference schedule, they will compete in the always-tough ESCC.

New Trier's Duke Olges gives Northwestern verbal commitment

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247 Sports

New Trier's Duke Olges gives Northwestern verbal commitment

New Trier junior three-star ranked athlete Duke Olges (6-foot-5, 260 pounds) gave Northwestern his verbal commitment last Sunday yet waited until Friday morning to make his decision public via his Twitter page.

Olges, who was recruited by the Wildcats as a defensive tackle, felt pressure to make a decision since the Wildcats already had one defensive tackle verbal commitment in Clear Springs Texas Jason Gold while another defensive tackle with an offer was making an on campus visit later that day.

“I didn’t know if it was the right decision, to be honest. It was impulse more than anything,” Olges told WildcatsReport.com's publisher Louis Vaccher. “But what comforted me is after having a couple days to think about it, I felt a sigh of relief. It would have hurt me too much to let that scholarship go. As much as I wanted to go and visit other schools, losing that scholarship would have hurt more than anything else.”

Olges is now the 10th known verbal commitment in the Wildcats Class of 2019  and the second in state pledge along with Bolingbrook junior DB Cameron Mitchell. 

Olges, who was holding 26 scholarship offers this spring, was planning to make summer visits to Iowa, Michigan State, Wisconsin, Virginia and Duke before giving the Wildcats his verbal commitment.