The CPS performance this fall is making a case that the CPS is more than basketball
When people think of the CPS they think it's a basketball conference. And rightfully so, basketball will always be king at the CPS. It helps when it seems like every year the nationally ranked players and teams. This year is no different. Simeon with Jabari Parker(one of the nations' stop senior players) and their rosterful of Division 1 players and Whitney Young with Jahil Okafor (one of the nation's top junior players) and their crew will make high school sports headlines for the next couple of months.
But at the same time, the CPS is making serious progress in a few other sports. Consider the advancements in the following sports:
Lane Tech rampaged through the state playoffs beating Niles West, New Trier, and Evanston before finally falling to Glenbrook North in the sectional finals (final 16) in class 3A. Lane ended up ranked in the area in boys soccer. This is the first time I have seen a class 3A team ranked that high so late in the season. But it wasn't just Lane. Lake View and Washington both advanced to the state Super Sectionals (elite 8) in class 2A. Also, to show you how deep the CPS is in soccer, the CPS champ was Kelly. They lost ot the first round of the state playoffs 1-0 to a good Hinsdale Central program, but maybe the best team in the CPS this year. Plus Mather won state last year. The CPS has a 4-6 very high caliber soccer programs particularly at the 2A level and some with serious potential. I feel that Kelly, Lane Tech, Washington, Lake View are seriously established and schools like Farragut, Little Village, Hubbard, Curie, Whitney Young, and Juarez have potential to take it to the next level. With an abundance of talent at the lower levels and lots of enthusiasm,look for the CPS to be a player at the state level every year from this point out.
The CPS had a breakout season in girls swimming with 3 all-state performances at the state meet and a bevy of qualifiers. This was the best performance as a whole that the CPS has done at the IHSA state meet. Lane Tech and Northside Prep are the cream of the crop in the CPS. The quality of coaching and numbers are really high at both schools. Previous to this year, they were already established programs, but it seems like this year they both took it to another level. Lane has over 50 girls in its swimming program, making it a big sport at Lane. Whitney Young is not too far from Lane and Northside. The Dolphins took 3rd at both the frosh-soph and varsity levels. Jones and Payton decided to co-op and form one combined team. Lincoln Park and Curie have some potential to take it to the next level as well.
Boys Cross Country
The days where the CPS sends a team downstate are becoming a norm. The CPS sent 3 teams (Lane, Jones, Mather) and a bunch of individuals to the state meet. Lane qualified 2 years in a row now in class 3A. But 2012 will always be remembered as the Jones College Prep state championship team. With Lane and Jones both having great young coaches and a boatload of talent to develop at the lower levels, look for both programs to continue to be a player at the state level in years to come.
Hubbard, Curie, and Whitney Young have good developing programs.
Yes golf. Whitney Young boys golfer Conor Dore(so) placed 9th at the state final. That was the first state medalist for the CPS since Mike Cooper of Fenger placed 4th in 1972. Lindblom has a developing program. On the girls side Payton and Taft seem to have the most promise.