CSN Chicago’s High School Lites will have cameras across the city and suburbs Friday night, as several teams across Chicagoland are fighting for their playoff lives in crucial Week 9 matchups. Plus, some huge conference showdowns take place including Loyola traveling to the South Side to battle St. Rita in the CCL Blue showcase game. Also EDGYTIM heads up north for the North Suburban Lake battle between Lake Zurich and Stevenson.
Evergreen Park @ Reavis (7 p.m.)
EDGY's Take: Evergreen Park (8-0) has been rolling all season behind quarterback Sean Ryan, running back Keyshawn Carpenter and standout wide receiver Jacquet McClendon. Reavis (5-3) has five wins but is low on playoff points (31), making this is a must-win for the Rams and head coach Tim Zasada. Can the Rams slow down the Mustangs offense?
Prediction: Evergreen Park 34, Reavis 20
Glenbrook North @ Highland Park (7 p.m.)
EDGY's Take: The winner takes the Central Suburban North conference crown. Glenbrook North (5-3) has been getting a big time performances from senior quarterback AJ Spitz. Highland Park (7-1) counters with quarterback Tommy Sutker and the Giants also have one of the state's top kickers in Arizona verbal commit Josh Pollack, yet Highland Park also has just 25 playoff points heading into this game. Have the Giants been tested, and will it's biggest test come this Friday?
Prediction: Glenbrook North 27, Highland Park 21
Buffalo Grove @ Rolling Meadows (7 p.m.)
EDGY's Take: Rolling Meadows (5-3) is looking to capture the Mid Suburban East conference crown along with an automatic state playoff bid. The Mustangs are still buzzing over last week's stunning come-from-behind 24-21 win over Hersey. Quarterback Bobby Suchecki will need to play large again this week. Buffalo Grove (2-6) is out of the state playoffs, yet when has any Buffalo Grove team not played its best against its longtime rival in Rolling Meadows? If Buffalo Grove pulls off the upset, look to quarterback Trey Cervantes as being a key for the Bison.
Prediction: Rolling Meadows 37, Buffalo Grove 21
St. Edward @ St. Francis (7 p.m.)
EDGY's Take: Both St. Edwards (5-3) and St. Francis (4-4) seem headed towards the state playoffs, yet a win here would make one head coach sleep a bit better on Saturday morning. St. Edward will get the offense cranked up behind junior quarterback Joseph Mullen. St. Francis has a big time running back in senior James Butler and the Spartans and the Green Wave are both battle-tested. This is also the last game ever for both in the Suburban Christian Blue conference. Can St Ed slow down James Butler? Can the Spartans defense ground the Green Wave passing attack?
Prediction: St. Francis 26, St. Edward 12
Bradley-Bourbonnais @ Andrew (7:30 p.m.)
EDGY's Take: Andrew (5-3; 40 playoff points) is in the state playoff field win or lose this week. Bradley (5-3; 34 playoff points) with a loss here would have a very nerve racking Saturday night as a potential playoff points bubble team. Andrew has a terrific 1-2 punch on offense with quarterback Jacob Platt and Western Michigan verbal commit, running back Jarvion Franklin. Bradley will give the ball to running back Jarrod Ware. Can the Boilermakers stop the Andrew offense and slow down its run game? Can the Boilermakers pulls off the nearly must-win on the road?
Prediction: Bradley 35, Andrew 34
New Trier @ Evanston 7:30 p.m.
EDGY's Take: One of the best and oldest rivalries in the North suburbs here. New Trier (4-4) is in a must-win mode and the Trevians will give the ball to running back Kevin Mulhern, while the New Trier defense will need to repeat last week's impressive performance in limiting a potent Niles West offense. Evanston (5-3) is state-playoff bound yet the Kits are looking to get their offense back on track this week after getting shut out by Maine South, 35-0, last Friday night. Can the Kits and quarterback Chris Little get on track this week? Can the Trevs pound the football again against the Evanston defense?
Prediction: New Trier 33, Evanston 28
(11) Glenbard North @ (7) Wheaton North (7:30 p.m.)
EDGY's Take: Run (Glenbard North) versus Pass (Wheaton North)? Maybe. Glenbard North (7-1) will give the football to Northwestern bound running back Justin Jackson, yet the Panthers defense has also been getting better and better each week since a Week 1 loss to Batavia. Wheaton North (7-1) has also improved after a loss to rival Wheaton South earlier this season. Wheaton North and Northwestern commit quarterback Clayton Thorson is an All-State candidate and remains the key to the Falcons' chances in the post-season. Can the Panthers defense derail Thorson? Can Wheaton North contain Superman (Justin Jackson)?
Prediction: Glenbard North 25, Wheaton North 21
Downers Grove North @ Hinsdale Central (7:30 p.m.)
EDGY's Take: The biggest question here is which team's starting quarterback will/could play here? Downers Grove North (5-3) has been without injured standout QB David Edwards and have rotated a few different quarterbacks including standout senior LB Vontae Diggs under center. Hinsdale Central (4-4) has been without starting senior quarterback Chase Hamilton since Week 4 and if Hamilton can return he gives the Red Devils offense a sorely needed passing threat. Check the starting lineups and then adjust your pick accordingly here.
Prediction: Hinsdale Central 24, Downers Grove North 14
Hinsdale South @ Downers Grove South (7:30 p.m.)
EDGY's Take: Downers Grove South (5-3; 28 playoff points) has the inside track to win the automatic state playoff bid, yet a loss here could spell disaster for the Mustangs. Hinsdale South (4-4) is in must-win mode if they plan on extending the 2013 season. Downers Grove South played its best game of the season in last week's 47-14 win over Willowbrook as quarterback Jordan Skach leads the Mustangs offense. Can the Hornets keep it's offense on track against a much improved DGS defense? Can the Mustangs grab the outright conference crown?
Prediction: Downers Grove South 27, Hinsdale South 20
(2) Lake Zurich @ (23) Stevenson (7:30 p.m.)
EDGY's Take: Lake Zurich (8-0) has been rolling behind its usually tough defense and an offense that will run the football yet has also found a passing game in 2013 behind quarterback Noah Allgood. Stevenson (6-2) started off the season at 0-2 yet have bounced back and will look to pull off the upset win here. Stevenson will rely heavily on junior quarterback Willie Bourbon and a deep group of offensive skills. Can the Patriots offense dent the always tough Bears defense? Can Lake Zurich run the ball against the Patriots defense?
Prediction: Lake Zurich 28, Stevenson 26
(1) Loyola @ (9) St. Rita (7:30 p.m.)
EDGY's Take: Loyola (8-0) is in line to win the CCL Blue title outright with a win on the South Side. The Ramblers are getting a big year from senior quarterback Jack Penn yet Penn and a handful of others sat out due to injury in last week's win over Lake Forest Academy. St. Rita (7-1) has only lost to Mount Carmel this season and the Mustangs have played well ever since that loss. Senior quarterback Tommy Mister (Iowa State) spearheads a very quick and athletic offense for St. Rita in 2013. Can Loyola's defense lock down Mister and the Mustangs offense? Can St. Rita gain some playoff momentum with an upset win here against another No. 1 ranked team coming to town?
Prediction: Loyola 20, St. Rita 16