Preps Talk

Recruiting News and Notes: Marist's TJ Ivy inching closer to college decision

Recruiting News and Notes: Marist's TJ Ivy inching closer to college decision

JJ McCarthy (QB), Nazareth Academy

Nazareth Academy quarterback JJ McCarthy added his first scholarship offer late last week from the Iowa State Cyclones after putting on an impressive showing at the North Central College satellite camp which had the entire Cyclones staff in attendance. While landing a scholarship after a college camp is common, it's not very common when an incoming high school freshman adds an offer.

McCarthy (5-foot-11, 150 pounds) whose 8th grade Hudl highlight video is approaching 3,400 views was, in all honesty, one of the top overall quarterbacks I observed at the NCC satellite camp. McCarthy has also been impressive on the 7-on-7 circuit this offseason for Midwest Boom. McCarthy, despite his abilities and potential, has yet to step on a high school football field. Drawing such an early offer from the Iowa State is proof positive that the recruiting process is drawing attention, and eventual offers at an alarmingly earlier and earlier rate.

TJ Ivy (TE), Marist

Marist three-star ranked senior tight end TJ Ivy (6-foot-5, 220 pounds) is down to his Top 4 schools and seems to be getting closer to making a college decision.

"I'm still down to my Top 4 schools (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa and West Virginia," Ivy said. "I'm planning to get out to make some campus visits next month and then I'll make my college decision."

Ivy has made several visits to Illinois, Indiana and Iowa, but has yet to see West Virginia.

"I've never been to West Virginia," Ivy said. "I'm looking forward to visiting them in person next month. I just want to see how I fit in with West Virginia, see the campus and the surrounding area and just get a better feel for them."

[RELATED: Hoffman Estates linebacker pledges to Purdue]

Phil Saleh (OL), OPRF

Oak Park-River Forest senior offensive linemen Phil Saleh (6-foot-4, 260 pounds) is a two-sport athlete (football/basketball) whose football recruiting stock has climbed this summer.

"I have offers now from Ball State, Indiana State, Western Illinois, Eastern Illinois and Fordham," Selah said. "I went to the Northwestern camp and I'm not sure where else I will camp this summer. I'm juggling both my team football camp and basketball camp. NIU has been pushing me pretty hard to come and camp with them this summer so I might end up at NIU for a camp."

Noah Shannon (DT), Oswego

Oswego senior three-star ranked defensive tackle Noah Shannon (6-foot-2, 290 pounds) has been busy since decommitting from Minnesota last month. Shannon camped with the Gophers at the North Central College satellite camp last week which featured several Minnesota coaches, including head coach PJ Fleck. Shannon also has more camps and visits planned.

"I'm heading out to NIU on Wednesday for a camp that will have Penn State, Arkansas and other schools," Shannon said. "I'm pretty sure I'm done with camps after NIU. I also want to get out to visit Indiana, Missouri and Arkansas later this summer."

Barrington DE Lukas VanNess and Lemont senior WR Anthony Sambucci give verbal commits


Barrington DE Lukas VanNess and Lemont senior WR Anthony Sambucci give verbal commits

Barrington senior three star ranked defensive end Lukas VanNess (6-foot-5, 240 pounds) wrapped up a wild last few months of his recruiting process and today gave the Iowa Hawkeyes his verbal commitment. 

"After a great official visit weekend at Iowa meeting with the entire staff incoming recruits and current players it became apparent that Iowa was the right fit and decision for me," VanNess said. "Iowa offers such a family atmosphere that it just can't be created anywhere else."

VanNess, who was offered a scholarship last week by the Iowa Hawkeye coaches didn't see his recruiting stock really begin to talk off until three weeks ago. VanNess, who had some FCS and limited lower D1 offers at the time attended and performed well at the Lindenwood Megacamp in early June. Immediately after that camp VanNess was able to come away with multiple offers from the likes of Illinois, Kansas, NIU, Wyoming and his recruiting stock took off since that camp and grew to an impressive 31 offers before pledging to the Hawkeyes today.

VanNess is also the Hawkeyes 18th known verbal commitment in the Class of 2020 and the fifth known State of Illinois pledge for Iowa. VanNess joins Decatur MacArthur S AJ Lawson who earlier this weekend also committed to the Hawkeyes along with Richards RB Leshon Williams, Byron OL Tyler Elsbury plus Lena Winslow DT Isaiah Bruce as State of Illinois pledges for Iowa. 

Lemont senior WR Anthony Sambucci (6-foot-1, 175 pounds) added an offer from Western Michigan last week and made a return visit to Western Michigan this weekend and on Sunday gave the Broncos and head coach Tim Lester his verbal commitment. 

"The offer and the opportunity from Western Michigan was just too good for me to pass up," Sambucci said. "I visited again this weekend and after getting to learn more about the coaches and the team I knew I was ready to commit to Western Michigan."

Sanbucci is the 12th known verbal commitment for Western Michigan in the Class of 2020 and the third State of Illinois pledge. Sambucci joins Phillips S Ronald Pledger along with Brother Rice S Giacomo Irace as Land of Lincoln pledges for WMU.

68 Days to Kickoff: St. Laurence

68 Days to Kickoff: St. Laurence 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.

Head coach: Adam Nissen

Assistant coaches: Scott Johnson, Dominic Riccordino, Anthony Rispoli, Jermaine Hampton and Steve Nye

How they fared in 2018: 4-7 (2-2 CCL Green Conference). St. Laurence failed to qualify for the 2018 IHSA state football playoff field. 

2019 regular season schedule:

Aug. 30 vs Hyde Park
Sept. 6 @ Eisenhower
Sept. 13 @ Joliet Catholic
Sept. 20 vs. Nazareth Academy
Sept. 27 vs DePaul Prep
Oct. 4 vs Benet Academy
Oct. 11 @ Brother Rice
Oct. 18 @ Providence Catholic
Oct. 25 @ De La Salle

[MORE: 76 Days to Kickoff - Eisenhower]

Biggest storyline: Their new head coach. Adam Nissen was the athletic director at I.C. Catholic Prep and helped guide the Knights to three consecutive state titles. He now takes the reins of a Vikings program looking to get back to the playoffs.

Names to watch this season: OL/DL Myron Lewis (Sr.) and RB Nate Thomas (Jr.)

Biggest holes to fill: The Vikings played a ton of underclassmen in 2018 and welcome back 14 returning starters (five offense, nine defense).  They will need replace four graduated starting offensive linemen from a season ago.

EDGY's Early Take: The Vikings missed the IHSA state playoffs last year, but it was a team that played and developed several underclassmen. They will bring a ton of experience to the field come August. If the Vikings can get their newer offensive line to gel this summer, they have the potential to be a very tough out in 2019.