Need to know the scoop on signing day? Who's going where and why? Can Unity win it all in football? Ask prep sports coordinator Fred Kroner who, well, knows everything. He's chatting at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday but submit questions anytime.
Lets get right to the questions this week. Thanks to all who participate.
Right now the "new" Okaw conference coming in 2 years has 6 teams committed.
Any idea on who else they are looking to add? I believe they want to add atleast 2 more teams and maybe 3-4
No matter who they add, is going to be a very competitive conference for all sports
Hi Brian. I believe the revived Okaw is looking at a mid-December deadline for any commitments so that they can start planning schedules for the 2014-15 school year. No doubt they would like at least two more schools and, yes, four more would be ideal as far as scheduling for football.
I've heard the league sent inquiries to Clinton, Decatur St. Teresa, Stanford Olympia and Paxton-Buckley-Loda. I'd say it;s very much a long shot to think that Clinton or St. Teresa will leave the new conference they just joined to return to the Okaw. Olympia, I'm sure, has travel concerns, more so than it would currently have in the Corn Belt.
PBL is a logical addition. However, to this point, the school has been committed to making things work in the SVC and that league just added another football-playing member last week (Dwight). It remains to be seen if that league will remain intact. Certainly if there is more movement from other schools, it might force PBL's hand.
To me, Tuscola would seem a good fir for the new Okaw, but like Clinton and St. Teresa, not sure if they would want to leave a league so soon after joining.
The revived Okaw, by all appearances, will be a super-competitive league, perhaps even more so than the current Okaw, at least from top to bottom.
We should have a better idea within a month how things will shape up for the future.
Fred,Who do you think will win in the semi-finals 1-A through 5-A?
Hi Tom. On the day the pairings were released, the IHSA asked me to predict championship-game contenders for classes 1A-4A. In those of those four classes, the teams I picked are still playing and in the other class, one of the two has made the Final Four.
I originally picked Stockton and Maroa-Forsyth in 1A and will stick with that. In 2A, I had mercer County making the finals and I still see that happening. My other pick was Casey-Westfield, but I had underestimated Belleville Althoff. I won't make that mistake again, so Althoff is my other pick.
In 3A, back in october I selected Sterling Newman and Greeville to be the finalists. I'm making changes on both and now going with Aurora Christian and Unity. Whatever happens, I can either say I was right the first time or I'm right now!
In 4A, staying with Alleman and Rochester as the two finalists.
I didn't have to pick in 5A previously and that appears to feature teams that are all very, very evenly balanced. I believe I will go with Montini and Morris. Nothing will surprise me in this class, however.
Thanks for asking!
Fred,I see there are only 7 teams left in the Playoffs from Clifton Central South through the rest of the State. Isn't that a fairly low number.or aboit the same as most years?
Hi Tom. I haven't studied the semifinals back over a long period of time, but it is certainly fewer by four or five from 2011. It might be worth checking to see how those two years compare to the past decade.
With the Colbert commit,are we done with KBD?
Hi Tony. My source on all things Illini-basketball oriented is our beat writer Marcus Jackson, and he assures me that KBD is still very much of a priority. He might see this as an opportunity to join a recruiting class which, by most accounts, is already top 20 nationally and could zoom much higher. Great players like to play with other great players, so I don' t think anything that has happened thus far would serve as a deterent.
Thanks for this week's assortment of questions. We will be back next week, in holiday mode, for more!