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Circuit Scouting

Biggest Takeaways from the Chicago Elite Classic

By Tim Jones, 12/06/22, 3:45PM EST

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SIMEON ANSWERS FIRST BIG TEST: If there was any doubt that the Simeon Wolverines deserved their preseason No. 1 ranking in the state of Illinois, they put these doubts to rest after Saturday’s game against St. Rita. Simeon put on a dominating performance from start to finish on the state’s preseason No. 2 team, defeating St. Rita by 27 points. Wes Rubin and Jalen Griffith were the two most impressive players from this game. A four-year varsity player, Griffith is a vet and it showed in his play. Griffith finished with 24 points and controlled the tempo for Simeon. Wes Rubin made four three-pointers and totaled 21 points and 11 rebounds. Sam Lewis had 18 points for the Wolverines. Miles Rubin was terrific as always. Kaiden Space, Michael Ratliff, Steve Turner all played roles. Simeon just really has no weaknesses and if this outing was any indication of what we’ll see from them this season, then good luck.

KENWOOD’S DEPTH: In a game where Dai Dai Ames scored 12 points, one might be curious how the Kenwood Broncos got it done versus one of the state's most talented teams in Joliet West. Ames was in foul trouble nearly the entire game and sat the majority of the third quarter. Tyler Smith, Calvin Robins Jr, and Isaiah Green stepped up to the plate and delivered. Smith tallied 18 points, six assists, and a handful of steals. He demonstrated tremendous poise at the lead guard spot, especially when Ames was out of the game. Robins showcased elite athleticism and scored 20 of his points in the second half. Green nailed a huge three-pointer late in the fourth and finished with 10 points. Sophomore Aleks Alston is also extremely talented and freshman guard Noah Mister is capable of providing some valuable minutes. Chris Riddle, who started his career at Kenwood but played last season at AZ Compass, is dealing with an injury and has yet to play for the Broncos. Easily a favorite in Class 4A.

JEREMIAH FEARS HAS ARRIVED: As a freshman last year, Jeremiah Fears began making his own name for himself at Joliet West. The younger Fears has grown since then and is now noticeably over 6-feet. If you ask me about Jeremiah Fears, I’d say he is the best sophomore in the state and in my opinion, one of the best long-term prospects in the 2025 class as a whole. He has the offers, but I don’t think he gets enough recognition as one of the elite players in his class. I think by his senior year, we’ll be talking about him as a consensus top-30 player and one of the two or three best combo guards in the country. Fears has gotten off to a hot start so far in his sophomore season and that continued this weekend at the Chicago Elite Classic. Ultra-talented combo guard that is only going to get better as he ages. Natural scorer and advanced ball-handler with deep range. Scored 17 points in the loss to Kenwood.

OUT-OF-STATE TEAMS IMPRESS: This year’s event was undoubtedly headlined by the in-state teams. Most would agree that the four most talented teams in the state were present and facing off against one another with Simeon and St. Rita matchup, followed by Kenwood and Joliet West. However, the out-of-state teams did not disappoint. Two of the three out-of-state teams won in a large fashion, with Gonzaga (DC) and Vashon (MO) making their presence felt on Saturday. Gonzaga defeated St. Ignatius 77-59 and Vashon handled Curie 59-36. Nyk Lewis of Gonzaga and Kennard Davis Jr. of Vashon led the way for their respective squads.

SIMEON ANSWERS FIRST BIG TEST If there was any doubt that the Simeon Wolverines deserved their preseason No. 1 ranking in the state of Illinois, they put these doubts to rest after Saturday’s game against St. Rita. Simeon put on a dominating performance from start to finish on the state’s preseason No. 2 team, defeating St. Rita by 27 points. Wes Rubin and Jalen Griffith were the two most impressive players from this game. A four-year varsity player, Griffith is a vet and it showed in his play. Griffith finished with 24 points and controlled the tempo for Simeon. Wes Rubin made four three-pointers and totaled 21 points and 11 rebounds. Sam Lewis had 18 points for the Wolverines. Miles Rubin was terrific as always. Kaiden Space, Michael Ratliff, Steve Turner all played roles. Simeon just really has no weaknesses and if this outing was any indication of what we’ll see from them this season, then good luck.

KENWOOD’S DEPTH: In a game where Dai Dai Ames scored 12 points, one might be curious how the Kenwood Broncos got it done versus one of the state's most talented teams in Joliet West. Ames was in foul trouble nearly the entire game and sat the majority of the third quarter. Tyler Smith, Calvin Robins Jr, and Isaiah Green stepped up to the plate and delivered. Smith tallied 18 points, six assists, and a handful of steals. He demonstrated tremendous poise at the lead guard spot, especially when Ames was out of the game. Robins showcased elite athleticism and scored 20 of his points in the second half. Green nailed a huge three-pointer late in the fourth and finished with 10 points. Sophomore Aleks Alston is also extremely talented and freshman guard Noah Mister is capable of providing some valuable minutes. Chris Riddle, who started his career at Kenwood but played last season at AZ Compass, is dealing with an injury and has yet to play for the Broncos. Easily a favorite in Class 4A.

JEREMIAH FEARS HAS ARRIVED: As a freshman last year, Jeremiah Fears began making his own name for himself at Joliet West. The younger Fears has grown since then and is now noticeably over 6-feet. If you ask me about Jeremiah Fears, I’d say he is the best sophomore in the state and in my opinion, one of the best long-term prospects in the 2025 class as a whole. He has the offers, but I don’t think he gets enough recognition as one of the elite players in his class. I think by his senior year, we’ll be talking about him as a consensus top-30 player and one of the two or three best combo guards in the country. Fears has gotten off to a hot start so far in his sophomore season and that continued this weekend at the Chicago Elite Classic. Ultra-talented combo guard that is only going to get better as he ages. Natural scorer and advanced ball-handler with deep range. Scored 17 points in the loss to Kenwood.

OUT-OF-STATE TEAMS IMPRESS: This year’s event was undoubtedly headlined by the in-state teams. Most would agree that the four most talented teams in the state were present and facing off against one another with Simeon and St. Rita matchup, followed by Kenwood and Joliet West. However, the out-of-state teams did not disappoint. Two of the three out-of-state teams won in a large fashion, with Gonzaga (DC) and Vashon (MO) making their presence felt on Saturday. Gonzaga defeated St. Ignatius 77-59 and Vashon handled Curie 59-36. Nyk Lewis of Gonzaga and Kennard Davis Jr. of Vashon led the way for their respective squads