Michael O’Brien’s notebook: May 26, 2017

SHARE Michael O’Brien’s notebook: May 26, 2017

Riverside-Brookfield coach Tom McCloskey cheers on his players as they battle Stevenson. | Patrick Gleason/For the Sun-Times.

Technically, the high school basketball season starts Thanksgiving week. But for the coaches, players, media and hoops junkies, the annual Riverside-Brookfield Summer Shootout is the real tip-off event.

Forty teams will participate on June 3 and 4. It’s the 15th year that Mike Reingruber will run the prestigious event. Things will be a bit different this season. Reingruber, an assistant coach the past 20 years, was named head coach last month.

“I’m really excited to guide our program and carry on the tradition that has been created here,” Reingruber said. “I grew up in the community, played here and coached here.  I bleed blue and white and I’m looking forward to trying to lead our program to even greater heights.”

Reingruber takes over for Tom McCloskey, who helped elevate the program to a new level. McCloskey was 437-236 and won 15 conference titles in his 16 years at the helm.

“I have learned so much working with Coach McCloskey during his tenure at R-B and he has given me the guidance and freedom to continue to grow as a coach,” McCloskey said. “He is truly a class act and a great friend.

“Tom’s years at R-B have been super important to our program, our school, and our community.  The amount of lives in our community he has influenced by teaching and coaching, and the culture he has helped create at R-B is truly remarkable.  He definitely left the basketball program in a very healthy place and is going to be missed on many different levels.”

This season’s shootout is stacked with talented programs, including Simeon, Young, Curie and Bogan. Uplift, St. Ignatius and St. Louis Vashon are the new additions to the shootout.

Here’s the full list of teams and the schedule:

2017 Riverside-Brookfield Shootout schedule


It’s the debate that just won’t go away. Should high school basketball have a shot clock? The National Federation of High School Associations is still against the shot clock. It’s unlikely that the Illinois High School Association would make a change as long as that organization remains anti-shot clock.

However, things are slowly changing around the country. Maryland officially added a 35-second shot clock this month. Massachusetts, Maryland, Rhode Island, Washington, New York, California, North Dakota and South Dakota already have shot clocks.

The expense would be considerable. According to a study done by the Cleveland Plain Dealer it would cost $5,000 to $25,000 per school to install and operate shot clocks.


Kevin Clancy, a 1998 Notre Dame grad, is taking over for Tom Les as head coach of the Dons. Clancy has been an assistant coach at the school for 11 years, he was captain of the Loyola University basketball team in 2002.

“The transition to the Kevin Clancy Era will be smooth,” Les said. “Kevin has been an integral part of the basketball success throughout my 10 years. His knowledge and experience enabled me to delegate many of the head coaching responsibilities. The ND hoops program is in good hands.”

Thornridge legend Townsend Orr is taking over for John O’Rourke at TF South, who resigned after eight seasons. Orr graduated from Thornridge in 1990 and went on to star at Minnesota.

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