Michael O’Brien’s Super 25 high school basketball rankings for Feb. 20, 2022

Thornton vaults into the top five after beating Kenwood.

SHARE Michael O’Brien’s Super 25 high school basketball rankings for Feb. 20, 2022
Thornton’s Ty Rodgers (20) dunks the ball during the game against Kenwood.

Thornton’s Ty Rodgers (20) dunks the ball during the game against Kenwood.

Kirsten Stickney/For the Sun-Times

Ignore the calendar. March Madness has arrived.

It actually already has started. The regional quarterfinals took place Saturday, and now we all sit around and wait for the regional semifinal doubleheaders on Wednesday.

The Illinois High School Association’s new playoff format will take some getting used to, but it was time to shake things up a bit. It’s going to be interesting to see what the crowds are like the entire way, especially in Champaign.

There was some shifting around in the Super 25 this week. Thornton has vaulted up to No. 5 after winning on the road at Kenwood. Illinois recruit Ty Rodgers and junior Vincent Rainey were terrific. I’ve been hinting for weeks on Twitter and ‘‘No Shot Clock’’ that the Wildcats were a significant threat in Class 3A.

Hillcrest, Leo and Rolling Meadows dropped a bit after losses, but I’m still bullish on their playoff chances. In the past, a late loss served as a warning sign heading into the playoffs, but that hasn’t been as true in the four-class playoff era.

The high school basketball state playoffs are back. Finally. Here we go.

All-Area team

Coaches and athletic directors, it’s time to nominate players for the Chicago Sun-Times All-Area team.

Please email mobrien@suntimes.com by 6 p.m. on Wednesday.

The All-Area team is made up of the 20 best players in the Sun-Times’ coverage area of nearly 400 schools. If you are eligible for the rankings, you are eligible for All-Area.

Coaches who’ve already nominated players for the All-City team don’t need to send new nominations.

The All-City team will be released on Tuesday.

Super 25 for Feb. 20, 2022
With record and last week’s ranking

1. Glenbard West (30-1) 1
Dominated Simeon

2. Glenbrook South (29-2) 2
Handled Deerfield

3. Young (20-9) 3
Peaking at the right time

4. Simeon (23-5) 4
Consecutive losses

5. Thornton (20-5) 14
Won at Kenwood

6. Curie (24-6) 7
Chikasi Ofoma is the key

7. Kenwood (22-8) 5
Still full of potential

8. Hillcrest (24-4) 6
Stumbled vs. Proviso East

9. New Trier (27-3) 9
Challenging regional

10. Wheaton Warrenville South (29-2) 10
Could face the Polish Hammer on Friday

11. Oswego East (30-1) 11
Faces Oswego on Wednesday

12. Hyde Park (20-7) 12
Class 3A title contender

13. Leo (21-4) 8
Lost to DePaul Prep

14. Rolling Meadows (26-5) 11
Lost to Barrington

15. Bolingbrook (25-6) 15
Red-hot at the right time

16. Homewood-Flossmoor (19-7) 16
Handled Lockport

17. Larkin (27-3) 17
Heavy favorite in regional

18. Clark (20-4) 18
Will be a factor in Class 2A

19. Mount Carmel (26-4) 19
Intriguing Class 3A contender

20. Brother Rice (23-6) 22
Beat St. Rita

21. Lyons (23-5) 20
Could face Proviso East on Friday

22. DePaul Prep (21-5) 21
Beat Leo, lost to Marian Catholic

23. Burlington Central (28-3) 23
Solid Class 3A dark horse

24. Yorkville Christian (18-13) 25
Overwhelming Class 1A favorite

25. Proviso East (21-7) NR
Beat Hillcrest

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