Nazareth Academy

Illinois AP preps preseason football rankings

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NBC Sports Chicago

Illinois AP preps preseason football rankings

The preseason AP polls are out. Here are the latest rankings of Illinois high school football teams in each class, according to an Associated Press panel of sportswriters:

Class 8A

No. Team Pts
1. Loyola (10) 127
2. Lincoln-Way East (3) 119
3. Maine South 93
4. Naperville Central 85
5. Homewood-Flossmoor 73
6. Marist 44
7. Warren 42
8. Edwardsville 33
9. Minooka 27
10. Barrington 21

Others receiving votes:  Oswego 18, Stevenson 8, Bolingbrook 7, Hinsdale Central 6, Oak Park-River Forest 4, Neuqua Valley 3, Niles Notre Dame 3, Huntley 2.

Class 7A

No. Team Pts
1. Nazareth (11) 123
2. Batavia (1) 113
3. Mount Carmel 92
4. St. Charles North 89
5. Brother Rice (1) 80
6. Glenbard West 48
7. Wheaton Warrenville South 35
8. Willowbrook 34
9. Lake Zurich 31
10. Harlem 15

Others receiving votes: Moline 10, Rolling Meadows 9, DeKalb 8, Hersey 7, Glenbard East 5, Hononegah 4, Normal Community 4, Benet 3, Maine West 2, Plainfield North 2, Lincoln-Way West 1. 

Class 6A

No. Team Pts
1. Richards (3) 112
2. Cary-Grove (7) 107
3. Phillips 93
4. Simeon (3) 90
5. Crete-Monee 81
6. Prairie Ridge (1) 67
7. Antioch 52
8. Washington 45
9. Providence 36
10. Normal West 29

Others receiving votes: Glenwood 26, Lemont 9, Springfield 7, Peoria Central 6, Kaneland 4, Lake Forest 4, Rock Island 1, Yorkville 1. 

Class 5A

No. Team Pts
1. Joliet Catholic (3) 114
2. East St. Louis (11) 110
3. Montini 107
4.  Sacred Heart-Griffin 77
5.  Hillcrest 66
6. Sycamore 44
7. Sterling 43
8. Boylan Catholic 42
9. St. Rita 38
10. Metamora 26

Others receiving votes: Cahokia 25, Highland 23, Mascoutah 14, MacArthur 12, Payton 5, St. Laurence 4, Solorio 3, Marion 3, Evergreen Park 3, Morris 3, Kankakee 2, Champaign Central 1, Springfield Southeast 1.


Class 4A

No. Team Pts
1. IC Catholic (10) 122
2. Bishop McNamara (2) 111
3. Rochester (1) 110
4. Coal City (1) 102
5. Richmond-Burton 62
6. Marengo 40
7. Columbia 31
8. Taylorville 30
T-9. Effingham 23
T-9. Genoa-Kingston 23

Others receiving votes: Johnsburg 22, Murphysboro 22, Stillman Valley 20, Pontiac 13, Herscher 9, Geneseo 7, Marian Central Catholic 7, Dixon 4, Fairbury Prairie Central 3, St. Francis 3, Paris 2, Mt. Zion 2, Tolono Unity 1, Breese Central 1.

Class 3A

No. Team Pts
1. Byron (8) 125
2. Monticello (2) 104
3. Eureka (2) 81
4. Williamsville 76
5. Carlinville 54
6. Wilmington (1) 53
7. Princeton 47
8. Fairfield 33
9. Lisle 26
10. Beardstown 21

Others receiving votes: Farmington 20, Nashville 14, Pana 10, Monmouth-Roseville 10, Greenville 10, Peotone 8, Quincy Notre Dame 7, Alleman Catholic 7, Breese Mater Dei 4, Anna-Jonesboro 2, Pleasant Plains 2, Vandalia 1.

Class 2A

No. Team Pts
1. Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley (6) 108
2. Maroa-Forsyth (4) 96
3. Clifton Central (1) 82
4. Decatur St. Teresa 65
5. Newman Central Catholic 54
6. Eastland-Pearl City (1) 52
7. Bismarck-Henning 48
8. Orion 45
9. Downs Tri-Valley 40
10. Fieldcrest 26

Others receiving votes: Illini West 15, Rockridge 9, Althoff Catholic 8, Mercer County 4, Orr 3, West Hancock 2, Auburn 2, Eldorado 1.


Class 1A

No. Team Pts
1. Forreston (4) 98
T-2. Lena-Winslow (5) 84
T-2. Tuscola (1) 84
4. Moweaqua Central A&M (1) 51
5. Camp Point Central 49
6. Argenta-Oreana 44
7. Aurora Christian  40
8. Dakota 37
9. Athens 33
10. Annawan-Wethersfield 24

Others receiving votes: Hope Academy 23, Arcola 19, Ottawa Marquette 17, Carrollton 14, Triopia 12, Brown County 8, Fisher 7, Fulton 6, Princeville 5, Milledgeville 2, Madison 2, Morrison 1.

2 Days to Kickoff: Nazareth Academy

2 Days to Kickoff: Nazareth Academy

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 Aug. 5, we’ll unveil the @NBCSPrepsTop 25 Power Rankings, leading up to kickoff on Friday, Aug. 30.

School: Nazareth Academy

Head coach: Tim Racki

Assistant coaches: Casey Moran, Joe Reynolds, Rudy Luna, Brody Budmayr, Jeff Tumpane, Joe Battaglia, Steve Gray, Andy Miller and Larry White

How they fared in 2018: 13-1 (6-1 East Suburban Catholic Conference). Nazareth made the 2018 7A state playoff field and defeated Andrew, Hersey, Simeon and Batavia. They advanced to the state title game and defeated St. Charles North 31-10.

2019 regular season schedule:

Aug. 31 vs Cardinal Ritter (MO)
Sept. 6 vs Curie
Sept. 13 vs Fenwick
Sept. 20 @ St. Laurence
Sept. 27 vs Leo
Oct. 4 vs De La Salle
Oct. 11 @ Marist
Oct. 18 @ Notre Dame
Oct. 26 @ Benet Academy

[MORE: 73 Days to Kickoff - Fenwick] 

Biggest storyline: It's a pretty simple one-- Can Nazareth Academy win back-to-back Class 7A state titles?

Names to watch this season: QB J.J. McCarthy (Jr., Michigan) LB Marcus Griffin (Sr.) and WR Tyler Morris (Soph.)

Biggest holes to fill: The Roadrunners will need to replace all five starting offensive linemen from a season ago.
 
EDGY's Early Take: The Roadrunners are seeking a repeat of last year's Class 7A championship. Not a bad feat for a program that has been "success factored" by the IHSA for the past two seasons. They have an actual enrollment of 772 and a miltiplied enrollment of 1274, which is much closer to what you would find at a 5A school. Head coach Tim Racki's offense will be spearheaded by junior four star-ranked  QB J.J. McCarthy (Michigan), who has a stable full of talented receivers and backs led by junior RB Derrick Strongs, sophomore WR Tyler Morris and incoming transfer junior WR Landon Morris (6-foot-6, 205 pounds). Morris is another intriguing D-1 talent to watch this season. The defense has experience back. They're led by senior DT C.J. West, senior LB Riley Theobald and senior LB Marcus Griffin. Junior DE Ryan Keeler (6-foot-5, 250 pounds) had multiple Power Five scholarship offers this summer. If the Roadrunners can find the right pieces along the offensive line, they have a great shot to hoist a first place trophy Thanksgiving weekend in DeKalb.  
 

Edgy Tim's 20th annual IHSA football All-State team

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NBC SPORTS CHICAGO

Edgy Tim's 20th annual IHSA football All-State team

Below is the 20th annual EDGYTIM.com All-State team. All players have been selected from Classes 8A thru Class 5A. 

Offense

QB JJ McCarthy, Nazareth Academy (6-foot-2, 180 pounds) - Only a sophomore, passed for 3,448 yards and 37 touchdowns in leading the Road Runners to the Class 7A state title. 

RB Jirehl Brock, Quincy (6-foot-0, 200 pounds) - Ran for 2,158 yards and 33 touchdowns in just 10 games in 2018. 

RB Keenan Hailey, Joliet Catholic (5-foot-9, 185 pounds) - Ran for 2,637 yards and 34 touchdowns in leading the Hilltoppers to the 5A state title. 

TE Jahleel Billingsley, Phillips (6-foot-5, 227 pounds) - Alabama commit. Just did it all (TE/DE/WR/QB) for the Wildcats in 2018 and is one of the state's best overall athletes. 

WR Jackson Ritter, Lincoln-Way East (6-foot-4, 205 pounds) - Was easily one of the biggest impact receivers from one of the state's most dominant teams in 2018. Averaged 19 yards per catch in 2018. 

WR Rashaan Palmer Jr., Simeon (6-foot-4, 200 pounds) - Was at times as dominant a receiver as anyone in the state of Illinois. Possesses a huge reach and length and exceptional overall physical tools and ball skills. 

OL Peter Skoronski, Maine South (6-foot-4, 270 pounds) - Only a junior, Skoronski, who already has multiple Power 5 scholarship offers was dominant on both sides of the football for the Hawks

OL Trevor Keegan, Crystal Lake South (6-foot-6, 290 pounds) - The state's top ranked recruit in the Class of 2019 will announce his college choice on Dec 11. Helped led the Gators to the state playoffs in 2018. 

OL Addison West, Cary-Grove (6-foot-4, 270 pounds) - Western Michigan commit. Class 6A state champion who played on both sides of the line and keyed one of the state's best running attacks in 2018. 

OL Evan Kirts, Brother Rice (6-foot-5, 265 pounds) - Illinois commit. Has physically grown and developed into a strong offensive tackle this past season for the Crusaders. 

OL JJ Guedet, Washington (6-foot-8, 265 pounds) - Minnesota commit. Was a dominant two way starter on both sides of the football for the Panthers in 2018. 

KR/PR Michael Love, Nazareth Academy (5-foot-9, 170 pounds) - One of the state's best and most versatile players who was a huge key in the Road Runners 2018 Class 7A state title season. 

ATH Alante Brown, Simeon (5-foot-10, 170 pounds) - Michigan State commit. Brown has played quarterback, receiver and defensive back for the Wolverines and is also one of the state's most dangerous athletes in 2018. 

Defense

DL Zack Pelland, Warren Township (6-foot-4, 250 pounds) - Colgate commit. Was a team leader and captain for one of Chicagoland's top defenses in 2018. 

DL Demond Taylor, East St Louis (6-foot-3, 275 pounds) - NIU commit. Taylor is one of three players (Taylor, Jeff Thomas and Jerrell McDaniels) who have been a four-year varsity starter for the Flyers and head coach Darren Sunkett. 

DL Deion Harry, Crete Monee (6-foot-6, 257 pounds) - Harry was a key leader and defensive end for the Class 6A state runner up Warriors in 2018.

DL Cam Mattox, Hillcrest (6-foot-3, 215 pounds) - NIU commit. Speedy off the edge pass rusher who also can drop back into coverage. Was a big key for the Hawks and head coach Mo Weaver in 2018. 

LB Maema Njongmeta, Stevenson (6-foot-1, 210 pounds) - Wisconsin commit. Njongmeta has all the tools to develop into a big time defender at Wisconsin. Has great speed and physical tools.

LB Jackson Bruscianelli, Montini Catholic (6-foot-0, 200 pounds) - A multi-year starter and tackling machine (148 total tackles in 2018) for the Class 5A state runner up Broncos. 

LB Michael Jansey Jr, Batavia (6-foot-2, 210 pounds) - Northwestern commit. Was simply one of the top overall defenders and athletes in the Dukane Conference and in Class 7A in 2018. 

DB Sebastian Castro, Oak Lawn Richards (6-foot-1, 198 pounds) - Iowa commit. Castro has been one of the best and most versatile athletes in the state of Illinois over the past few seasons. 

DB Tyler Nubin, St. Charles North (6-foot-2, 185 pounds) - Minnesota commit. Another versatile and high level athlete who played QB/WR/RB/S for the Class 7A state runner up North Stars in 2018. 

DB Jake Gonzales, Loyola Academy (6-foot-1, 193 pounds) - Penn commit. Gonzalez has been the quarterback of the Ramblers defense for the past few seasons. Was the leading tackler for the Class 8A state champion Ramblers this fall. 

DB Sam Tumilty, Willowbrook (5-foot-9, 175 pounds) - Just a junior, Tumilty was a key high level two way starter who just never left the field for the Warriors and head coach Nick Hildreth in 2018. 

K/P Jack Olsen, Wheaton Warrenville South (5-foot-10, 170 pounds) - A junior, Olsen set a new IHSA state record with hitting 8 field goals this season. Possesses one of the top legs in the Class of 2020.