CSN's Top 20 Basketball Rankings

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CSN's Top 20 Basketball Rankings

By Joe Collins and Taylor Bell
CSNChicago.com

1 Simeon (30-1)

Results: Defeated Whitney Young 52-42 and Marist 65-44

This Week: Tuesday vs. Evanston (4A Chicago State Super-Sectional)

Hoops Talk: Kendrick Nunn ignited a 19-1 second quarter against Cinderella Marist. The Wolverines are three wins away from a three-peat.

More Simeon: Check out webisode 14 of DRIVE: Simeon Hoops

2 Proviso East (30-0)

Results: Defeated Lake Park 73-52 and Schaumburg 78-39

This Week: Tuesday vs. West Aurora (4A Hinsdale Central Super-Sectional)

Hoops Talk: The Pirates have defeated their playoff opponents by an average margin of 22 points. Sterling Brown scored 18 against Schaumburg.

3 Warren (26-3)

Results: Defeated Lake Forest 51-35 and Mundelein 87-52

This Week: Tuesday vs. Rockford-Auburn (4A NIU Super-Sectional)

Hoops Talk: Two sectional games, two victories against fellow North Suburban-Lake foes. Now, a date with standout guard Fred Van Vleet and Auburn.

4 Bloom (28-3)

Results: Defeated Thornton 44-24 and Homewood-Flossmoor 43-32

This Week: Tuesday vs. Edwardsville (4A ISU Super-Sectional)

Hoops Talk: It pays to hit free throws. Donald Moore scored 18 of his 20 points from the charity stripe in the win against Homewood-Flossmoor.

5 Hillcrest (25-5)

Results: Defeated Providence 66-46 and Morgan Park 59-48

This Week: Tuesday vs. DuSable (3A Joliet Central Super-Sectional)

Hoops Talk: The Hawks, looking for their second state title in three years, had four players in double-figures against Morgan Park.

6 Marshall (24-7)

Results: Defeated St. Joseph 58-52 and St. Francis 45-41

This Week: Tuesday vs. North Chicago (3A Hoffman Estates Super-Sectional)

Hoops Talk: Milton Doyle and Korbin McClain both contributed with big games against St. Francis as the Commandos survived the upset scare.

7 North Chicago (23-6)

Results: Defeated Grayslake Central 77-62 and Lakes 69-59

This Week: Tuesday vs. Marshall (3A Hoffman Estates Super-Sectional)

Hoops Talk: ISU recruit Aaron Simpson tallied 27 points against Lakes; North Chicago won their fourth sectional title in five years.

8 West Aurora (25-5)

Results: Defeated Plainfield East 58-53 OT and Metea Valley 69-61

This Week: Tuesday vs. Proviso East (4A Hinsdale Central Super-Sectional)

Hoops Talk: The Blackhawks, backed by Jontrell Walkers 22 points and 18 more from Juwan Starks, shot 55 from the field against Metea Valley.

9 Plainfield East (27-2)

Results: Lost to West Aurora 58-53 OT

This Week: Season Over

Hoops Talk: The Bengals could not hold a 12-point lead against the Blackhawks. Still, 27 wins for a new kid (school) on the block is more than impressive.
10 Marist (26-6)

Results: Defeated Bogan 67-63; Lost to Simeon 65-44

This Week: Season Over

Hoops Talk: Kudos to Maristtwo upsets over ranked foes (Curie & Bogan); the Curie win -- thanks to a spirited play-by-play guy -- vaulted them into the national spotlight.

11 Bogan (26-4)

Results: Lost to Marist 67-63

This Week: Season Over

Hoops Talk: DeVaughn Johnson had 25 points against Marist, but the Bengals could not hold a 15 point lead with three minutes to go.

12 Elgin (26-4)

Results: Defeated McHenry 43-34; Lost to Rockford-Auburn 67-56

This Week: Season Over

Hoops Talk: Kory Brown was stellar against Auburn (20 points, 13 rebounds and six blocks). But Fred Van Vleet (32 points) was too much.
13 Evanston (21-10)

Results: Defeated New Trier 65-49 and Niles North 62-42

This Week: Tuesday vs. Simeon (4A Chicago State Super-Sectional)

Hoops Talk: No team has enjoyed a better late season surge like the Wildkits. But can they play giant-killers against Jabari Parker and company?

14 Downers Grove South (23-6)

Results: Lost to Metea Valley 60-51

This Week: Season Over

Hoops Talk: A nice season for the Mustangs, but replacing Jerron Wilbut, Jamall Millison, Kevin Honn and Greg Garro will be a challenge.
15 Huntley (26-4)

Results: Lost to Rockford-Auburn 62-48

This Week: Season Over

Hoops Talk: The Red Raiders lose to Auburn in the sectional championship for the second straight year.

16 Curie (25-3)

Results: No games played

This Week: Season Over

Hoops Talk: Malcolm Hill-Bey and Devin Foster will not be there, but watch Cliff Alexander and Marcellus Davis next season.
17 Andrew (24-3)

Results: Lost to Homewood-Flossmoor 36-22

This Week: Season Over

Hoops Talk: The T-Bolts did not score for the first 10 minutes of the game against H-F. Andrew will reload with forward Jubril Adekoya in 2012-13.

18 Seton (27-5)

Results: Lost to Breese Central 57-47 and Rockford Lutheran 55-51

This Week: Season Over

Hoops Talk: The Sting pick up fourth place honors at state. Guards Mark Weems, Jr. and Kamal Shasi will be some of the key contributors next season.

19 Whitney Young (16-10)

Results: Lost To Simeon 52-42

This Week: Season Over

Hoops Talk: Sophomore Miles Leonard scored a team-high 13 points against Simeon. Hell be part of a dominant lineup in Chicago hoops next year.

20 Du Sable (16-9)

Results: Defeated St. Ignatius 51-44 and Dunbar 57-55

This Week: Tuesday vs. Hillcrest (3A Joliet Central Super-Sectional)

Hoops Talk: The Panthers won their first sectional championship in school history. Chris Galbreath and Evance Gayles reached double-figures against Dunbar.
Looming & Lurking: St. Ignatius, Metea Valley, New Trier, St. Joseph, Wheaton St. Francis, Mundelein, St. Viator, Oak Park, Homewood-Flossmoor, Niles North, De La Salle, North Shore Country Day, Dunbar, Aurora Central Catholic, Providence-St. Mel, Lakes, Grayslake Central, Ridgewood, Orr, De La Salle, Farragut, Yorkville.

89 Days to Kickoff: Vernon Hills

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89 Days to Kickoff: Vernon Hills

CSNChicago.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 Jul. 31, we’ll unveil the @CSNPreps Top 25 Power Rankings, leading up to kickoff on Friday, Aug. 25.

School: Vernon Hills

Head coach: Bill Bellecomo

Assistant coaches: Corey Atwell, Greg Stilling, Tim Dydo, Jason Czarnecki, Avelino Cortez, Brian Palmer, Mike Larsen, Dave Schroetter

How they fared in 2016: 10-4 (3-2 Central Suburban North), lost to Peoria in the IHSA Class 5A state title game.

[MORE: 90 Days to Kickoff - Morris]

2017 regular season schedule:

Aug. 25 – Grayslake North

Sept. 1 – @ Zion-Benton

Sept. 8 – Rolling Meadows

Sept. 15 - @ Hoffman Estates

Sept. 22 - Highland Park

Sept. 28 – @ Deerfield

Oct. 6 - Maine West

Oct. 13 - @ Maine East

Oct. 20 - Glenbrook North

Biggest storyline: Can the Cougars make another deep run in Class 5A?

Names to watch this season: Senior WR/DB Max Lyle, senior OL/DL Danny Lester and senior LB Kyle Fasbinder

Biggest holes to fill: The Cougars will need to reload in particular on the offensive side of the football with just three starters back from a season ago.

EDGY's early take: The Cougars had a great run in 2016 and while several key starters have graduated, Vernon Hills still has some gas left in the tank. Getting off to a strong early start could be a big key in 2017 as the Cougars schedule is tough especially early on in 2017.

With Ben Zobrist sidelined by sore wrist, Cubs move Ian Happ to second base

With Ben Zobrist sidelined by sore wrist, Cubs move Ian Happ to second base

LOS ANGELES – The Cubs drafted and developed Ian Happ with the idea of turning him into a Ben Zobrist-type player who would move quickly through the farm system and surface as a versatile big-league contributor and/or legitimate trade chip.

With Zobrist sidelined because of a sore left wrist, the Cubs got their first look at Happ playing second base in The Show during Saturday’s 5-0 loss at Dodger Stadium. That kind of depth – plugging in a 2015 first-round pick while a World Series MVP rests – should ultimately propel the Cubs over the course of a 162-game season.

Even as the Cubs stutter-step through a 25-23 start, there are enough choices for the best defensive second baseman on the team and a National League Championship Series co-MVP (Javier Baez) to sit on the bench.

“We know that the talent’s there,” Zobrist said. “It’s not like having any one or two guys out of the lineup is a big drop-off for us because of the talent that’s there. And we know that just because we have a lot of young players doesn’t mean that they’re not extremely capable of doing the job as well.”

Zobrist – who’s reached base in 23 straight games and emerged as a new leadoff option with Kyle Schwarber struggling – felt something on an awkward swing in the first inning of Friday’s 4-0 loss to the Dodgers. Zobrist played through it that night and called it a “day-to-day thing” that didn’t require an MRI.

[MORE: Is Joe Maddon turning Kyle Schwarber into a platoon player?

Facing Clayton Kershaw on Sunday after back-to-back shutouts will be a game-time decision.

“It’s tough,” Zobrist said. “We just haven’t strung together enough quality at-bats to score runs the last two games. It’s not just because of us. They’ve pitched well. Their pitchers are pretty hot right now. They’ve spotted up. They’ve gotten early strikes where they needed to and then gone to work pretty well on us.

“The task doesn’t get any easier tomorrow with Kershaw. We just got to keep trying to chip away.”