The Illinois High School Playoffs are in full-swing, and this Friday night, a pair of Chicago-based teams will go at it to see who goes on and who goes home.
Neither team will have home-field advantage. Gately Stadium in Chicago is the home field for both Simeon Vocational and Mount Carmel.
Here's a look at players who should have an impact on the game for Simeon:
Spearman is the heart and soul of the Simeon defense. Averaging double-digit tackles every game (most times near 15 tackles-per-game). Mount Carmel's offense is predicated upon the run game, so if Simeon is going to slow them down, they'll need a big night from the defense, and specifically from Spearman, who will have to play sideline-to-sideline.
Moore came into this season predominantly as an offensive tackle, but many project that he could play defensive end as well. On the offensive side, though, he'll have his hands full with an aggressive and quick Mount Carmel defensive line.
Lee has been quiet thus far, but he's recently picked up his first two offers. Lee has a great frame for a defensive end, and he's just starting to fill it out. If he can add weight while maintaining his athleticism and explosiveness, he'll be sure to pick up a few more offers before it's all said and done. But in regards to this game, he'll have use his length to contain the edges against the Mount Carmel triple option.
Players For Mount Carmel:
Last year, Smith had teammate Vontrell Williams
at his side on the Caravan defensive line, but this year, it's Smith dealing with all of the double-teams and added attention. Still, it's been hard to stop Smith effectively all season. He's a big body, but he carries very little wasted weight, and his strength and explosiveness makes him tough to handle.
A lot of attention has been paid to junior Matt Domer
, but Smith is the more experienced back and runs tough. It will take more than just Smith to establish the run in this one, but he's the one theyll likely key off of early and often.
The junior running back is still adjusting to the demands of such a run-heavy attack each week, but he provides a nice change of pace from senior Draco Smith. If Domer is able to break some big runs to the outside, it could open things up for the rest of the Mount Carmel attack and put some heat on Simeon.