Preps Talk

High School Lites Preview: Week 8

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High School Lites Preview: Week 8

CSN Chicago will have cameras covering the biggest high school football games across Chicagoland on the Week 8 edition of High School Lites, Friday night at 11:00 p.m. So who comes away with a win in a huge Southwest Prairie showdown when Oswego travels to Plainfield North? Can Sandburg shock No. 1 ranked Homewood-Flossmoor in Orland Park? Who wins the Battle of District 86 as Hinsdale Central travels to Darien to take on Hinsdale South? And who comes away with a win when Batavia travels to Geneva in one of the state's oldest and (arguably) best rivalry games?

 

Oswego @ Plainfield North, 7:00pm

EDGY's Take: Plainfield North (5-2/4-1) will try to beat an Oswego team (6-1/5-0) that has won 33 straight Southwest Prairie conference games. Plainfield North will look to get its offense into high gear behind senior QB JD Ekowa and junior RB Ty Hoosman. Oswego will counter with senior QB Steven Frank. The Panthers are a very physical team on both sides of the ball. Can Plainfield North win the battle upfront? Can the Oswego defense corral the speed from the Tigers offense?

EDGY's Pick: Oswego 31, Plainfield North 28

 

Oak Forest at Lemont, 7:00pm.

EDGY's Take: A terrific annual battle in the South Suburban Blue as Oak Forest (7-0/4-0) will look to run the football with senior RB/DB Nick Czeszewski. The Bengals also have a very strong defense. Lemont (6-1/4-0) has been able to get its young offense on track with QB Spencer Nagel and standout WR/DB Jeremy Fejedelem (Air Force). Can the Lemont defense slow down the Bengals power running game? The Indians’ offense will also have its biggest test of the season.

EDGY's Pick: Lemont 28, Oak Forest 21

 

Providence at (9) Brother Rice, 7:30pm

EDGY's Take: Brother Rice (6-1/1-1) has already locked up a state playoff berth and will look to keep its offense clicking with senior QB Cam Miller and a host of quality backs and receivers led by junior WR Ricky Smalling. Providence Catholic (2-5/0-2) is out of the state playoffs for the first time since 2010 so look for the Celtics to start building towards next season behind junior QB Jared Drake.

EDGY's Pick: Brother Rice 37, Providence Catholic 21

 

(1) Homewood-Flossmoor at (25) Sandburg, 7:30pm. 

EDGY's Take: Sandburg (6-1/5-0) is having a terrific season behind the arm of senior QB Alec Fidan and a very strong running game as well. Homewood-Flossmoor (7-0/5-0) is the state's top ranked team for several good reasons. Start with the Vikings offense led by senior QB Bryce Gray, the Harley-Hampton twins (senior RB's Deante and Devonte) along with Wisconsin commit WR Kendric Pryor; however, the Vikings defense was the story in last week's 28-3 win over Lincoln-Way East. Can the Sandburg defense slow down the Vikings offense? Can the Eagles’ balanced offense keep the H-F defense on the field…and the Vikings’ offense off of it?

EDGY's Pick: H-F 35, Sandburg 24

 

(19) Batavia at (22) Geneva, 7:30pm.

EDGY's Take: This Battle for the Upstate 8 River conference title is annually one of the best and most intense rivalry games. Batavia (6-1/4-0) has a 30-game conference winning streak and is led by senior QB Kyle Niemiec along with a speedy and very physical defense. Geneva (7-0/4-0) will look towards standout QB Sean Chambers and an offense that is explosive, yet also very balanced. Keep an eye out for RB  Justin Taormina. Last possession wins here?

EDGY's Pick: Batavia 38, Geneva 37 OT

 

 (12) Hinsdale Central at Hinsdale South, 7:30pm.

EDGY's Take: Hinsdale Central (6-1/4-1) has been clicking this season with a big time offense led by QB Michael Sessa, senior RB Christian Bobak and a large offensive line led by Michigan State commit Matt Allen and senior OG Doug Kramer Jr. Could this be a big time trap game against Hinsdale South (5-2/4-1)? The Hornets have a very strong group here led by Michigan State commit DE Josh King plus senior RB Marcus Curry and senior QB Sean McCormack. Can the Hornets defense slow down the Red Devils offense? This one could end up closer than you may think.

EDGY's Pick: Hinsdale Central 28, Hinsdale South 24

 

Conant at Hoffman Estates, 7:30pm.

EDGY's Take: Conant (6-1/2-1) is looking to finish the regular season strong and capture a high seed in Class 8A. The Cougars will look towards senior QB Matt Bradley along with standout senior WR/DB Palmer Graham. Hoffman Estates (3-4/1-2) is fighting for its playoff lives. They pulled off an impressive 25-24 OT win over Fremd last Friday behind a big performance from RB Chady Bitre. Can the Hawks stay alive and pull off another upset?

EDGY's Pick: Conant 31, Hoffman Estates 21

 

Palatine at Schaumburg, 7:30pm.

EDGY's Take: Once again, the Mid Suburban West is up for grabs. Both Palatine (5-2/2-2) and Schaumburg (4-3/1-2) are factors in the race and both have postseason hopes. Palatine has gotten a big season so far from junior QB Zach Oles while Schaumburg will counter with junior RB Emanuel Little. Can the Saxons defense bounce back from a tough loss last week to Conant and slow down the Pirates offense?

EDGY's Pick: Palatine 24, Schaumburg 14

 

Bishop McNamara at St. Ignatius, 7:30pm

EDGY's Take: Bishop McNamara (6-1/2-1) has been on a serious roll this fall and pulled off an impressive CCL crossover win last Friday over Providence Catholic. The Irish also have a big time name in Central Michigan commit senior RB Jonathon Ward, who is just 11 yards short of setting a new school rushing record. St. Ignatius and first year head coach John O'Connor (4-3/2-1) has the Wolves in line for a state playoff bid. They need a win this week against Bishop Mac or next week against DePaul Prep (5-2). 

EDGY's Pick: Bishop McNamara 37, St. Ignatius 14

VOTE: Viewers' Choice Game Of The Week

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NBC Sports Chicago

VOTE: Viewers' Choice Game Of The Week

Who wants it more?

We are putting High School Lites, Chicagoland's top prep sports show, in the hands of area football fans in our "Viewers' Choice Game of the Week." Fans will get the chance to pick one game that the @NBCSPreps crew will cover on Friday night. We will send our cameras to the game that gets the most votes; highlights and postgame reaction of that game will appear on that night's "High School Lites" broadcast at 11 p.m. The show also live streams at www.nbcsportschicago.com/watchlive. High School Lites will also have broadcast replays at 7:30 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. the following Saturday. 

Week 9 is “Bubble Week” for many teams fighting to stay on the right side of the postseason bubble. Who moves on? Whose bubble will burst? Will Wauconda advance to the playoffs after finishing 2-7 last year? Or will Grant end their season on a winning note? Schaumburg and Fremd both stand at 4-4. The winner goes to the postseason. The winner stays home for November. Zion-Benton hasn’t been to the playoffs since 2003. A win over Libertyville gets them there. But for the Wildcats, this ‘is’ their playoff game. Who wins in the North Suburban conference? We’ll send our cameras to one of the following:

Grant at Wauconda, 7:15 p.m.

Schaumburg at Fremd, 7:30 p.m.

Libertyville at Zion-Benton, 7:30 p.m.

— Follow @NBCSPreps on Twitter.
— Note the "pinned Tweet" atop the @NBCSPreps feed. Vote for the game you want us to cover.
— Spread the word! 

We will make an announcement on @NBCSPreps just after 4 p.m. Thursday with the official results of which game will be covered. And as a reminder, be sure to follow @NBCSPreps for updates on the "Viewers' Choice Game of the week," along with other high school sports news, scores and highlights this season.

Edgy Tim's Preps Power Rankings: Week 9

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NBC Sports Chicago

Edgy Tim's Preps Power Rankings: Week 9

Here are the latest @NBCSPreps Top 25 Power Rankings.
 
1. Lincoln-Way East 8-0 (1)
Last Week: Beat Thornwood, 56-18
This Week: vs Bolingbrook
EDGY's Take: The Griffins get a nice Week 9 test hosting Bolingbrook. Can the Raiders push the Griffins for four quarters?

2. Batavia 8-0 (2)
Last Week: Beat St. Charles North, 27-24
This Week: @ Wheaton North
EDGY's Take: An epic drive late in the game with no timeouts. The Bulldogs pull out the close-call win over St. Charles North.  

3. Brother Rice 8-0 (3)
Last Week: Beat Leo, 48-0
This Week: @ Montini Catholic
EDGY's Take: What were the preseason that the biggest Chicago Catholic League game of the year would be Brother Rice at Montini?

4. Marist 7-1 (4)
Last Week: Beat Marian Central Catholic, 42-6
This Week: @ Benet Academy
EDGY's Take: The Redhawks will get a nice Week 9 on Friday from Benet at Benedictine University. 

5. Mount Carmel 7-1 (5)
Last Week: Beat St. Laurence, 40-0
This Week: vs Fenwick
EDGY's Take: The Caravan have been playing as well as any contenders ranked here.

6. Homewood-Flossmoor 7-1 (6)
Last Week: Beat Andrew, 35-3
This Week: vs Sandburg
EDGY's Take: Head coach Craig Buzea got his 200th career win last Friday over Andrew.

7. Cary-Grove 8-0 (7)
Last Week: Beat Prairie Ridge, 21-14
This Week: vs Naperville Central
EDGY's Take: The Trojans rallied from being down 14-0 and scored 21 unanswered points to defeat their bitter rivals.

8. Simeon 8-0 (8)
Last Week: Beat Taft, 58-7
This Week: @ Curie
EDGY's Take: The big question coming Saturday night-- Will the Wolverines wind up in 8A or 7A? 

9. Nazareth Academy 7-1 (9)
Last Week: Beat Joliet Catholic, 49-20
This Week: vs Marian Catholic
EDGY's Take: The Roadrunners get a nice bounce-back win last Friday over Joliet Catholic.

10. Maine South 7-1 (10)
Last Week: Beat New Trier, 38-21
This Week: vs Niles West
EDGY's Take: The Hawks get another big Central Suburban South win. 

11. Oswego 8-0 (11)
Last Week: Beat Joliet Central, 49-0
This Week: @ Plainfield South
EDGY's Take: The Panthers will take on a very defensive-minded Plainfield South team on Friday.
 
12. Richards 8-0 (13)
Last Week: Beat Reavis, 51-0
This Week: vs Eisenhower
EDGY's Take: The Bulldogs continue to cruise and are gearing for a high seed in Class 6A.
 
13. Phillips 6-2 (14)
Last Week: Beat Westinghouse, 46-6
This Week: @ Raby
EDGY's Take: The Wildcats will look to finish strong this week against Raby.

14. Willowbrook 8-0 (15)
Last Week: Beat Proviso East, 40-7
This Week: @ Downers Grove South
EDGY's Take: The Warriors will look to send Downers Grove South (4-4) home for the holidays on Friday.

15. Naperville Central 6-2 (16)
Last Week: Beat Waubonsie Valley, 35-14
This Week: @ Cary-Grove
EDGY's Take: The Redhawks have won six straight games and have the makings of a team that could make some postseason noise. 

16. Bolingbrook 7-1 (17)
Last Week: Beat Thornton, 43-7
This Week: @ Lincoln-Way East
EDGY's Take: The Raiders will look to derail the "Big Cobalt Blue Machine" this Friday in Frankfort. 

17. Montini 8-0 (18)
Last Week: Beat Providence Catholic, 27-3
This Week: vs Brother Rice
EDGY's Take: The Broncos will host Brother Rice on Friday in the biggest game of the year in the Chicago Catholic League.

18. Oak Park-River Forest 6-2 (NR)
Last Week: Beat Glenbard West, 10-7
This Week: vs Lyons Township
EDGY's Take: The Huskies have a top-notch defense and found a way to beat Glenbard West at Duchon Field. It was OPRF's first win there since 1998.

19. Warren Township 7-1 (NR)
Last Week: Beat Stevenson, 21-0
This Week: @ Mundelein
EDGY's Take: The Blue Devils defense came to play. An impressive 21-0 shutout over Stevenson 21-0 last Friday.

20. Glenbard West 6-2 (12)
Last Week: Lost to Oak Park-River Forest, 10-7
This Week: @ Proviso West
EDGY's Take: The Hilltoppers defense is still salty as ever. But can the offense find a few more options besides standout RB Tyquan Cox?

21. Hillcrest 8-0 (22)
Last Week: Beat TF North, 50-6
This Week: vs Bremen
EDGY's Take: The Hawks have made it look easy this regular season. They'll go for a 9-0 sweep later this week in an effort to claim a high seed in 5A.

22. Notre Dame 7-1 (23)
Last Week: Beat Carmel, 21-7
This Week: vs Joliet Catholic
EDGY's Take: The Dons now host JCA and will try to knock out the Hilltoppers from the state playoff field.

23. Hinsdale Central 8-0 (24)
Last Week: Beat Lyons Township, 57-0
This Week: vs Hinsdale South
EDGY's Take: The Red Devils will get challenged this Friday against crosstown rival Hinsdale South (The "Doings Cup" game).

24. Rolling Meadows 8-0 (NR)
Last Week: Beat Hersey, 38-35
This Week: @ Buffalo Grove
EDGY's Take: The Mustangs get a huge win over Hersey. Why do I get the feeling we could see an RM-Hersey rematch in the postseason?
 
25. St. Charles North 6-2 (21)
Last Week: Lost to Batavia, 27-24
This Week: vs Wheaton South
EDGY's Take: The North Stars drop a last-second loss to Batavia last Friday; they will look to get back on track this week against another tough opponent in Wheaton South.