Beth Long’s football recruiting notebook

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Senior quarterback Jeremy Hunt is leading No. 9 Oak Park-River Forest this season. He’s a big-bodied, 6-2, 226 pound athlete who moves well in and out of the pocket.

It took one half of the opening game against Simeon to work out some jitters, but he’s rolling now.

“Scoring the first touchdown was the most exciting part of the early season,” said Hunt. “That was a big thing, I was also getting back into it. Missing football for so long then being back was great.”

“We had first game jitters, we’ve got a lot of young guys on the field and we also have some seniors who didn’t play a lot last year so it was kind of just coming down and playing the game with everyone around us watching.”

Hunt is getting used to what the recruiting process has to offer.

“I have an offer from Davenport and one from Robert Morris that I picked up recently,” said Hunt. “Other than that schools are just telling me that they want my first three game films. I have heard a little from the MAC.”

In the meantime, Hunt is focusing on several aspects of his game.

“I am hoping to show that I can be a quarterback that can play at their school and can succeed,” said Hunt. “Even though I am big I can come out and move around and throw the ball.”

Ritchie chooses Huskies

Homewood-Flossmoor wide receiver Tyrice Ritchie has made his college choice. The senior orally committed to Northern Illinois.

“I really love their football program along with their academics and coaching staff,” said Ritchie. “The minute I stepped onto campus I felt at home. NIU had the ability to capture me as a student and an athlete.”

At 6-1, 195 pounds Ritchie is an offensive standout for the Vikings.

“I thought NIU was the best decision and had the best opportunity for me,” Ritchie said.

New face

Loyola junior Charlie Gross, a 6-5, 265 pound offensive lineman, is starting to turn heads on the recruiting trail and on the field.

He’s the only junior starting on a seasoned, senior-led offensive line and has used the experience around him to his advantage.

‘I have learned to play more physical this year,” said Gross. “The seniors have helped me a ton with learning technique and just learning to play on varsity. It’s been crazy and really fun, for now it’s awesome.”

With a 3-0 start to the season, continuing top-ranked Loyola’s roll is the main focus for Gross.

“I think the adversity we’ve seen to start the season has made us closer as a team,” said Gross. “We pulled through the last few games and now were are 3-0.”

There is one visit on the horizon at some point this season for Gross, who is just beginning to hear from schools.

“Recruiting is good, I’m going to go visit Purdue in about a month and check out a game,” said Gross.

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