Preps Talk

Illinois lands Phillips linebacker Amani Jones

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Illinois lands Phillips linebacker Amani Jones

Phillips junior three-star ranked inside linebacker Amani Jones (6-foot-0, 215 pounds) gave Illinois head coach Tim Beckman his verbal commitment on Thursday after watching the Fighting Illini spring practice.

"I decided that I wanted to play for Illinois so I committed," Jones said. "Illinois is my in-state school and why not Illinois? Illinois was my first offer and I had been thinking about it over spring break. I just didn't want to wait and miss out on a great opportunity at Illinois."

Jones is now going to focus on trying to bring over two of his Phillips teammates, including defensive tackle Amir Watts and wide receiver Quayvon Skanes. Both players already have offers from Illinois.

[MORE PREPS: Busy spring for Hinsdale South DE Josh King]

"I want to now go out and get those guys to come with me to Illinois."

Jones, who was an All-State linebacker for the Wildcats and head coach Tim McAllister in 2014, is the first Chicago area verbal commitment for the Illini. Jones is also the third in-state pledge for Illinois and the fourth Class of 2016 verbal commitment for the Fighting Illini. Jones is joined by O'Fallon running back Kentrail Moran and Rockford Auburn safety Juwuane Parchman as in-state verbal commitments for Illinois.

Spring recruiting will reveal more 2022 names to watch

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USA TODAY

Spring recruiting will reveal more 2022 names to watch

With the ink still drying on the recently signed Letters of Intent from the Class of 2020, it must be time to refocus on the Class of 2021, right? 

While we still have nearly 10 months before the Class of 2021 can sign an early Letter of Intent, many Power 5 football powers have already extended early scholarship offers to many of its 2021 targets. Next up? The Class of 2022 has already begun to see more recruiting attention and draw more and more early scholarship offers. Here are the Top 5 names from the Class of 2022 on multiple Power 5 recruiting radar screens this winter:

Nazareth Academy sophomore WR Tyler Morris (5-foot-11, 180 pounds)- Morris, who has been a varsity starter for the Road Runners and head coach Tim Racki since his freshman season, is already holding 13 FBS scholarship offers including early offers from the likes of Illinois, Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Nebraska, Northwestern plus Notre Dame, Penn State and Wisconsin. Morris has also drawn recruiting attention from programs across the country. Expect more offers to flow again this spring once college coaches are allowed back into schools starting on April 15th. 

St. Rita wide receiver Kaleb Brown (5-foot-11, 185 pounds)- Brown, who was a huge part of the Mustangs 2019 Class 5A state title runner up offense is being recruited as a wide receiver. Brown is also holding multiple FBS level offers from the likes of Illinois, Iowa, Duke, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska and Notre Dame. Much like Tyler Morris, look for Kaleb Brown to add more Power 5 offers from outside of the Midwest beginning this spring. 

Naperville Central wide receiver Reggie Fluerima (6-foot-2, 200 pounds)- Fleurima, who is the son of former Notre Dame DL  Reggie Fleurima Sr. in the early 1990's, is also holding double digit offers this winter from the likes of Cincinnati, Illinois, Iowa, Michigan State, Minnesota, Missouri, Purdue, Virginia Tech and Syracuse. Fluerima made a late January unofficial visit to Iowa and is certain to draw plenty of traffic in school this spring from schools from across the county. 

Evanston running back Sebastian Cheeks (6-foot-2, 205 pounds)- Cheeks is a versatile athlete who no question passes the all important eyeball test. Cheeks has early offers so far from Wisconsin, Syracuse, Iowa State and Central Michigan and is drawing recruiting attention from FBS level nationwide. Cheeks is also an athlete recruit who can play several different positions at the college level. 

DB Ahmad Robinson East St. Louis (6-foot-0, 177 pounds)- Robinson, who transferred into East St. Louis this semester after playing his 2019 sophomore season at Cardinal Ritter in St. Louis, has all the tools to develop into a high level name in the Class of 2022. Robinson, who has been impressive this winter at various showcase event, has already added an early offer from Indiana and is one of multiple Flyer underclassmen that will draw college coaches into school this spring by the busload. 

Other Class of 2022 names on the rise?

Loyola Academy TE James Kyle (6-foot-5, 220 pounds)

Marist OL Deuce McGuire (6-foot-5, 280 pounds)

St. Rita OL Valen Erickson (6-foot-6, 280 pounds)

IHSA Preps Boys Basketball AP Poll

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AP

IHSA Preps Boys Basketball AP Poll

Here are the boys prep basketball polls with rank, team, first-place votes, record and total points.

Class 4A

No. Team W-L Pts Prv
1. Curie (5) 25-2 50 1
2. Chicago Heights (Bloom Twp.) 26-6 45 2
3.  Harvey Thornton 28-1 40 3
4.  Simeon 22-8 35 4
5. Homewood-Flossmoor 23-3 29 7
6. Collinsville 26-4 20 6
7. Whitney-Young 18-9 16 9
8.  Evanston 25-4 15 5
9.  O'Fallon 23-6 8 8
10.

Marian Catholic (Chicago Heights)

22-7

7

10

Others receiving votes: Bolingbrook  6. Joliet West 2. Stevenson 1. Loyola 1.

Class 3A

No. Team W-L Pts Prv
1. Niles Notre Dame (2) 26-4 65 T1
2. Peoria Notre Dame (4) 26-1 64 T1
3. Morgan Park (1) 20-8 55 3
4. Bogan 25-3 47 4
5. (tie) Galesburg 27-4 47 6
6. Lincoln 28-2 31 8
7.  Kankakee 23-4 24 9
8.  (tie) Oak Forest 25-2 24 5
9. DePaul College Prep 22-5

 

13

7

10

10.  

Rock Island 20-8

6


Others receiving votes: East St. Louis 4. Rockford Boylan 2. Carbondale 1. Centralia  1. Geneseo 1

Class 2A

No. Team W-L Pts Prv
1. Orr (7) 17-7 77 1
2.  Normal University 24-7 66 3
3. (tie) Breese Mater Dei (1) 25-5 64 2
4. Pinckyneyville 27-3 61 4
5.  Kewanee 27-4 50 6
6. Fairfield 27-4 37 7
7. Rockridge 25-5

23

8

8.  Pleasant Plains 27-4 19 5
9. Nashville 25-6 14 9
10. Bismark-Henning 30-0 12 10

Others receiving votes: Riverton 10. Crane 3. Dunbar 2. Corliss 1. Sterling Newman 1

Class 1A

No. Team W-L Pts Prv
1. Indian Creek (4) 30-0 66 1
2. Roanoke Benson (1) 30-1 56 3
3.  Winchester-West Central (1) 28-3 49 4
4.  Moweaqua Central A&M (1) 26-3 48 2
5. Effingham St. Anthony 26-3 46 5
6. Yorkville Christian 22-10 36 7
7.  Payson Seymour 27-2 35 6
8. Goreville 27-2 17 8
9.  Leo 17-14 17 T9
10.

East Dubuque

(tie)Woodlawn

25-6

28-3

6

6

T9

NR

Others receiving votes: Aurora Christian 3. Jacksonville Routt 1