Sun-Times news and notes
Updated: September 29, 2011 6:32PM
St. Rita guard Tony Hicks gave an oral commitment to Pennsylvania on Monday. Hicks chose the Quakers over Loyola, Dayton and South Florida. ‘‘Academics, first and foremost, was what set Penn apart from other schools,” Hicks said. ‘‘Plus, there is a real opportunity for me to contribute as a freshman. There is a great group of guys in the program there. It felt like a family.” While bigger basketball programs were heavily involved, both Hicks and St. Rita coach Gary DeCesare pointed out the recruiting job Penn coach Jerome Allen and his staff did to help secure the Hicks commitment. “The love they showed him went a long way,” DeCesare said. “They really did a great job of recruiting him. They followed him every game in July. And now the opportunities for him are endless with an Ivy League education.” Hicks averaged 13 points a game as a sophomore and 16 points a game last season.
Morgan Park freshman Kain Harris caught recruiting analyst Joe Henricksen’s eye at the Mac Irvin Back to School Shootout last weekend. Henricksen said Harris is clearly among the top prospects in the Class of 2015. “Harris is big and strong for his age and athletic, while also showing an ability to both put it on the floor and knock down shots with range,” Henricksen said.
With 11 IHSA playoff berths and one trip to the Prep Bowl in a 17-season span, Sullivan was one of the Public League’s better football programs from the late 1970s through the mid-90s. The Tigers then fell on hard times, but seem to be heading in the right direction under second-year coach Vince Rociola. After starting 0-5 last season, Sullivan won its last four games of 2010 and is off to a 5-0 start in the Inter-City 1 section. Senior running back Montero Jones, who has 11 touchdowns, and junior quarterback Joel Lohoua lead a triple-option attack that Rociola picked up from the Cary-Grove coaching staff. Rociola’s long-term goals include moving up to one of the Chicago sections next year, returning to the IHSA playoffs for the first time since 1994 and getting promoted to one of the Illini sections within a couple years. “I’m trying to build a program,” Rociola said.