Recruiting spotlight turns to 2020 class

A.J Henning (3) of Lincoln-Way East escapes a Bolingbrook defender, October 21, 2017 Worsom Robinson/For Sun-Times
A.J Henning (3) of Lincoln-Way East escapes a Bolingbrook defender, October 21, 2017 Worsom Robinson/For Sun-Times

The recruiting spotlight is firmly on the class of 2020. The local group is talented, led by four four-star prospects according to Rivals.com: Lincoln Way-East running back AJ Henning, Lake Forest defensive lineman Rylie Mills, Marist receiver Jadon Thompson and Maine South offensive lineman Peter Skoronski.

Nearly all of the the top-rated prospects in 2019 had committed by the start of senior year. It doesn’t look history will repeat itself. The local class of 2020 is still picking up big-time offers and trimming lists. All ten of the top local recruits are still uncommitted, a change from recent years.

Evanston running back Quadre Nicholson, a three star recruit, stresses that “my recruitment is still open.”

The six-foot, 185-pound junior turned heads in the first round of the state playoffs. His top ten currently features Boston College, Michigan State, Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Oklahoma State, Minnesota, Miami (Ohio) and Toledo.

Recruiting also took off for Simeon offensive guard Marcus Harper. The 6-4, 290-pound athlete helped the Wolverines reach the Class 7A semi-finals, standing out among a very talented group of lineman.

Harper named a Big Ten heavy top twelve: Iowa State, Temple, Boston College, Nebraska, Duke, Indiana, Oregon, Illinois, Cincinnati, Michigan State, Purdue and Minnesota. Northwestern fell just outside that group, but he will visit the school on Saturday.

“The schools that made my top 12 were the ones I was able to see myself playing for in the future,” Harper said.

Henning, the highest rated player in the area, has offers from all over the country including Michigan, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Alabama, LSU, Illinois, Michigan State and many more. Mills also has double-digit big-time offers.

“The most exciting thing will definitely be taking visits and realizing that I have the opportunity to play football in some of the schools I’ve watched ever since I was little,” Mills said. “Also meeting the coaches that I’ve seen on TV my whole life is exciting.”

Mills has 30 offers, and plans to begin to narrow down his list as he heads towards his senior season.

“I’m going to take my officials in the next few months so I’m really excited to get around the players,” Mills said. “I’m also really looking forward to summer camp with the football team and playing with everybody again.”

The class of 2020 is setting up to be one of the area’s best in recent memory. It should be a wild ride to Signing Day.

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