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.
Coaches and athletic directors, it’s time to nominate players for the Chicago Sun-Times All-Area team.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org 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
2. Glenbrook South (29-2) 2
3. Young (20-9) 3
Peaking at the right time
4. Simeon (23-5) 4
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
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
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