This isn’t a Public-Private debate, but picking out which teams to rank in the Catholic League Blue and East Suburban Catholic has gotten a lot tougher
I don’t remember every doing this before, but this week, I have all five Catholic League Blue teams in this week’s top 20.
In the ESCC, I’m going with the two teams I had the highest in the preseason, Carmel and Joliet Catholic.
And in my bubble teams on the outside, I have unbeaten St. Patrick, which hosts Joliet Catholic on Friday at Hanson, Nazareth, which is 3-1 and just knocked off Marist, and Marist, which beat Carmel in Week 3.
Stevenson, which started 0-2, losing to Loyola and Glenbrook South, is right there with the four 2-2 teams in the rankings — Mount Carmel, Glenbard North, Joliet Catholic and Morgan Park.
I got a chance to watch the Mount Carmel-St. Rita game that I recorded Friday night. I can’t recall a field that looked better on television for a high school game. Fred Weintraub’s team and ME-TV did a great job.
And St. Rita looked almost as good an the small screen as it did from the sideline.
I heard that cars on Western Avenue were backed up south of 95th Street before the game — that’s more than two miles.
Having the other nearby schools, Brother Rice, Marist and St. Laurence, all playing on Saturday didn’t hurt
Dynamic duo: Look for the running back tandem of Josh Hodur and sophomore Steve Fiorella for St. Laurence. Both are products of South Side power St. Bede.
CONFERENCE REALIGNMENTS: Look for Fenwick to move into the Catholic League Blue next fall to make it a six-team conference.
*The Aurora Beacon News reports that the Upstate Eight will have two six-team divisions with the adition of Metea Valley, which will play in the Upstate Eight division with East Aurora, Neuqua Valley, Waubonsie Valley St. Charles East and St, Charles North. The Upstate Eight North division will have Barlett, Elgin, Lake Park, Larkin, South Elgin and Streamwood.
FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS: Feniwck will host night games against St. Ignatius Oct. 3 and Morton West and Oct. 24 at Toyota Park against De La Salle.
The game at Toyota Park is intersting because there has been talk about games that are part of the Herbstreit Series that St. Rita played at in Cincinnati expanding to Chicago. The 20,000-seat venue would be a perfect site.
Here’s this week’s rankings
1 Maine South (4-0) 1
At Evanston on Friday
The offense is the best I’ve seen with QB Charlie Goro picking defenses apart and RB Matt Perez finding holes. Last week, the hawks outscored Glenbrook North (which beat them last season) and Maine East by a combined score of 107-7.
2 St. Rita (4-0) 2
At No.18 Providence on Friday
There was a temptation to elevate the Mustangs after a magnificent performance against Mount Carmel. Marty Hopkins and Dave Marciano lead an underrated defense. The offensive line is young, but playing extremely well. Mustangs; running back Jahwon Akui has had his name spelled incorrectly as Johwon
3 Naperville North (4-0) 3
Hosts No. 23 Glenbard North on Friday
The stakes are raised for the Huskies and RB Nick Malady in a rematch of last year’s Class 8A title game.
4 Wheaton Warrenville South (4-0) 4
At No.16 Naperville Central on Friday
“Golden Toe” Nick Immekus delivers a game-winning 45-yard field goal to beat Glenbard North.
5 Lincoln-Way East (4-0) 5
Hosts No. 14 Lincoln-Way Central Friday
Two shutouts in a row and a 93-yard TD on a kickoff return for Eric Sawicki in a SouthWest Suburban opener.
6 Bolingbrook (4-0) 6
Hosts Joliet on Friday
Junior achievement for QB Brad Geever and RB Jamel Martin. Senior DL Roosevelt Holliday continues to come up huge.
7 Geneva (4-0) 7
Hosts Sycamore on Friday
Michael Ratay carried 44 times against Glenbard South, which is a pace that could burn him out. Cry Hofstetter is a monster on defense
8 Brother Rice (4-0) 8
No.19 Mount Carmel Friday at Gately
Two weeks in a row at Gately for QB Tom Gibson and the Crusaders, who face a Mount Carmel team trying to avoid three consecutive losses for the first time in more than 20 years.
9 Barrington (4-0) 9
At Hoffman Estates on Friday
the Broncos continue to roll behind quarterback Cody Seeger. A showdown with Fremd should decide the Mid-Suburban West.
10 Thornton (4-0) 12
At Thornwood on Saturday
Quarterback Darren Jones is the real deal for coach Bill Mosel, who has produced more NFL players than any other coach in Illinois
11 Glenbard West (4-0) 13
Hosts Addison Trail on Saturday
Three running touchdowns for Robert Cook as Hilltoppers stop surprising Proviso West, looking for its first state playoff berth
12 Bartlett (4-0) 14
Hosts St. Charles North on Saturday
A winning combination for the Hawks — QB Josh Hasenberg to receiver Alex VanNess.
13 Hinsdale Central (3-1) 16
Hosts Oak Park on Friday
Quarterback John Whitelaw & Co. continue to roll. Mike Rogowski had a defensive touchdown in a 43-14 victory over Hinsdale South for the Doings Cup.
14 Lincoln-Way Central 4-0 18
At No. 5 Lincoln-Way East on Friday
Were the Knights looking ahead when they fell behind 10-0 to Stagg before rallying for a 28-16 victory?
15 Glenbrook South (4-0) 23
Hosts Waukegan on Friday
QB Ryan Hopkins is making believers. A showdown against Maine South, where Hopkins’ father coached two state championship teams, could determine the Central Suburban South.
16 Naperville Central (4-0) 24
Hosts No. 4 Wheaton Warrenville South on Friday
Quarterback Nick Linne, who threw for 100 yards, called Friday’s 28-13 victory over Wheaton North “a statement game.” What would he call a Week 5 win over Wheaton Warrenville South?
17 Loyola (3-1) NR
St. Ignatius Friday at U. of Chicago
Only loss at Brother Rice in the mud. Quarterback Lucas Ruske, whose brother played basketball at New Trier, is elusive and finds ways to get the job done.
18 Providence (2-2) 10
Hosts No. 2 St. Rita on Friday
The Celtics offense is 1-1 in the Catholic Blue with a total of six points on two field goals. It will take more offense than that to stay in a game against St. Rita.
19 Mount Carmel (2-2) 11
No. 8 Brother Rice on Friday at Gately
In the preseason, coach Frank Lento told everyone that his team was not the preseason No. 1. No one listened. But the recent bumps in the road don’t mean that the Caravan won’t be playing in late November.
20 Carmel (3-1) 20
At Marian Catholic on Friday
Corsairs back on track after being upset Week 3 at Marist as Mike Taylor runs for three TDs against Benet.
21 Cary-Grove (4-0) 21
At Jacobs on Friday
The Trojans roll past Johnsburg Saturday without RB Alex Hembrey, who was sidelined with an ankle injury,
22 Fremd (3-1) 25
At Schaumburg on Friday
The Vikings have won three in a row and face a Saxon team that impressed in a victory over Prospect.
23 Glenbard North (2-2) 15
At No. 3 Naperville North on Friday
Evan Watkins and Tyler Doll almost engineered an upset against Wheaton Warrenville South. Now, a rematch of the Class 8A title game.
24 Morgan Park (2-2) NR
Dunbar on Saturday at Gately
No Craig Drummond yet, but the Mustangs could run the table in the Public League
25 Joliet Catholic (2-2) NR
St. Patrick Friday at Hanson Stadium
Will unbeaten Shamrocks, who have been come-from-behind specialists, be able to knock off the Hilltoppers in the ESCC?
On the bubble: Oak Forest, Lemont, Hubbard, Nazareth, Marist, St. Patrick,
Stevenson, Sandburg, Wheaton North, Robeson.