Welcome to Windy City Hoops Report, where we take a look at everything that’s unfolding in greater Chicagoland’s legendary high school hoops scene.
As the season enters its second half, it’s hard to argue with something that has become prevalent in Chicago basketball across recent years: Simeon Career Academy is really, really good.
The Wolverines, who are the No. 2 ranked squad in Chicagoland according to the Chicago Tribune, earned their biggest victory yet with a clutch 67-63 win against fellow traditional Chicago power Morgan Park. Simeon got 20 points from breakout junior star Zach Norvell and a solid double-double of 11 points and 11 rebounds — not to mention 4 blocks — from power forward Ed Morrow, who signed to play for Nebraska.
Morrow is one of the headliners for Simeon, which has a big man earning big headlines for the second consecutive year. Just as national player of the year Jahlil Okafor was constantly in the spotlight, Morrow could be on the verge of a transcendent season for Simeon, just as he had during the summer on the AAU circuit.
To a certain degree, Morrow’s impact was predicted. He’s considered one of the top 25 power forward prospects in the country and sits just outside 247 Sports’ Top-100 seniors. Zach Norvell is at a similar level for junior prospects, but many may have doubted his immediate impact given his junior status.
The third, and most well-known, member of Simeon’s dominating trio is small forward D.J. Williams, an Illinois signee who is considered one of the top 10 small forward recruits in the country. Williams is no stranger to double figure games, as the Illini coaching staff knows well. He’s part of the reason why they were in attendance during the Morgan Park victory, though Norvell’s open future likely played a part as well.
In a city like Chicago, the wheels can always come off, no matter how strong a team starts. That could still happen to Simeon, though the Wolverines’ depth and high ceiling top-end talent makes it seem much more likely that we’re in for another deep run from the school.