High School football scores and highlights.
All the best highlights from week one of the high school football season set to music, known as the Fever in 90.
Week one high school football scores and highlights
DANVILLE, Ill. - Danville will have a new look this season. The Vikings plan to start nine sophomores. Tavion Boyd will replace Trent Sherfield at quarterback, and junior running back Kaleb McLain will be the go-to guy offensively. Even though they're one of the youngest teams in the Big 12, Danville head coach B.J. Luke says youth isn't always a bad thing.
MAHOMET, Ill. - Around Mahomet they call it the "Kenney Connection." You've probably heard it over the loud speaker if you've been to a Bulldogs' game recently. "When he first announced he said, "Kenny to Kenny" and then he said, "The Kenny Connection" and from then on it just became a moniker," said head coach Keith Pogue.
CHAMPAIGN -- People could vote on paying for new schools come November.
MT. ZION, Ill. - Payton Grinestaff's first year at quarterback didn't start well. "I think he had like seven picks in the first four games," said Mt. Zion head coach Mike Popovich. But it finished great. "[He] didn't throw another one the last five games and got better every week," Popovich said. "You can't say that about a lot of kids, and he is definitely not satisfied."
MAHOMET, Ill. - Mahomet-Seymour hit the practice field at 6:00 a.m. Tuesday to beat the heat as they get ready for their season opener against Mt. Zion. Seventh-year head coach Keith Pogue left it up to the seniors to decide whether to practice before or after school. They said it was worth waking up early. "I'm actually a big morning guy," said senior Joe Kenney. "So I don't mind coming out here and getting down and doing some work. It does beat getting in the heat though."
URBANA, Ill. - The Urbana Tigers are two seasons removed from the best year in program history. They won the Big 12 title and won a playoff game for the first time in school history. So last season's 2-7 finish isn't sitting well with them. "I think the issue last year in 2013 was we just didn't know how to handle success," said head coach Nathan Watson. "With that being said we were right there 14 points approximately from the playoffs and a lot of fourth quarter losses."
Rochester head coach Derek Leonard has high praise for his former quarterback Wes Lunt. Lunt was named the Illini starting quarterback this week.
GIBSON CITY, Ill. - The high school football regular season begins one week from tonight, and if GCMS wants to get back to the playoffs again this year, youth will be the name of the game. GCMS is working hard in camp to replace 17 seniors. They have only five seniors this year, but those leaders are helping the younger players come along.
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - SHG won the state title last season - the fourth in program history - and this year the Cyclones are once again primed for another deep playoff run. They return quarterback Gabe Green, a Southern Miss. commit - and Minnesota commit Quinn Oseland is back to protect him. Star receiver Malik Turner is gone - he's now a freshman at Illinois - but head coach Ken Leonard says they should have plenty of talent to fill his shoes.
TUSCOLA, Ill. - The new Central Illinois Conference look a lot like the old Okaw Valley - with a twist. Eight of last year's Okaw Valley teams decided to move in a different direction, so they formed the Central Illinois Conference - or CIC. St. Teresa and Tuscola headline the league alongside Shelbyville, Sullivan Okaw Valley, Clinton, Warrensburg-Latham, Meridian and Central A&M. Tuscola head coach Rick Reinhart says it will be a competitive conference from top to bottom. "We look forward to the challenge," he said. "We think that we're on the right track but the thing is everybody in the state thinks that right now, so somebody's right and somebody's wrong."
FISHER, Ill. - The Fisher Bunnies took a big step forward last year, winning six games after just two wins the previous season. They have a veteran group of running backs returning, but they do have big shoes to fill on the line - especially with the departure of standout Josh Wallick. The Bunnies are energized for another run, especially with an upgrade to the stadium and a new fitness facility as well.
ST. JOSEPH, Ill. - St. Joseph-Ogden lost 17 seniors from last year's state runner-up squad, and head coach Dick Duval hopes the underclassmen learned valuable lessons as they prepare for this season - their first in the new Okaw Valley. "A lot of these guys got to play in a big game last year," Duval said. "Hopefully that will help them this year when we get into those big games. There's going to be quite a few of them in the regular season this year with this conference."
The St. Thomas More football team only has six seniors, but they have a lot of younger players with speed ready to step up.
The Unity football team is trying to make the playoffs for a 21st straight season. The Rockets are looking to build depth for the fall.
Maroa-Forsyth's Jack Hockaday, an Iowa football recruit is ready to lead the Trojans this season.
The Bismarck-Henning football team has been almost unstoppable during the regular season, but haven't had that kind of success in the playoffs. They're hoping to change that this season.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The Okaw Valley Conference will have a brand new look this year with the addition of St. Joseph-Ogden, St. Thomas More and Rantoul. The Spartans and Sabers come over together from the Sangamon Valley Conference, where they were two of the league's premier teams. Now the challenge gets ramped up a little more.
PAXTON, Ill. - PBL is looking to get back on track this fall. The Panthers won their first four games last year, just one win away from qualifying for the playoffs, but they went on to lose their final five games of the season. That bitter end to 2013 is motivating this year's 15 seniors to make PBL's first playoff appearance since 2006.
Here's a video to get you hyped for the new season!
Update: 10:05 pm, 8/13/14, Wednesday ATWOOD -- Atwood-Hammond High School is coming down, but one graduate tried making a last ditch effort to save part of it.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Jimmy Fitzgerald's future is set. The Centennial senior is headed to Illinois to play football next year. But before he goes, the three-star quarterback has some unfinished business with the Chargers - a winning season and a trip to the playoffs are his only focus for now. "Having six wins in the last two seasons is fuel to the fire," Fitzgerald said. "It just makes me want to work that much harder to get to the playoffs."
CERRO GORDO, Ill. - The CGB Broncos have big shoes to fill this season. They lost their starting quarterback and running backs Steve Isbell and Dee Woods, who combined to run for more than 3,000 yards. "We want to show people that we still know what we're doing around here," said head coach Andy Kerley. "We've had probably 80 percent of our kids throughout the summer. I think that's kind of become our identity is that we want to show people that we still know how to play football around here."
MONTICELLO, Ill. - Monticello head coach Cully Welter was just trying to have a little fun on a rare off-day last week. He took his family to a White Sox game, and during batting practice a ball was coming right at him. "A guy came from behind me, and he hit my hand," Welter said. "And as he hit my hand, the ball smacked me right [on the finger.]"
WCIA 3's Aaron Bennett talked with Westville head football coach Guy Goodlove at our town Westville.
PAXTON, Ill. - The Okaw Valley Conference has officially extended an invitation to PBL, in hopes the Panthers will join the league starting with the 2016-17 school year. The OVC is in search of a new member after Maroa-Forsyth announced it will leave for the Sangamo beginning in 2016.
DECATUR, Ill. - One of the top basketball recruits in central Illinois is switching schools. St. Teresa shooting guard Christian Williams will enroll at Lanphier High School in Springfield this fall, and he will play his senior season for the Lions. Lanphier coach Blake Turner confirmed the move to WCIA 3. Williams is one of the top prospects in the state for the Class of 2015. He already holds offers from Bradley, Illinois State, Northern Illinois and Green Bay. He averaged more than 18 points and 8 rebounds a game last season, and he will join a Lanphier team that spent most of last season ranked No. 1 in the state.
ST. JOSEPH, Ill. - St. Joseph-Ogden's Cole Berry has always been ahead of the game. He is only 16 years old, but he will be a senior this fall. WCIA 3's Matt Wettersten explains why now his baseball talent is making everyone stop and take notice.
Highlights from Round 1 in Savoy
NATIONAL -- High school students are no longer required to take the ACT exam.
Former Illinois basketball player Brett Melton has spent the last few days giving back to his hometown. Melton was a standout player at Mahomet-Seymour in the late 90's. Bad ankles forced him to transfer after just two seasons with the Illini, but as our Bret Beherns shows us, Melton still bleeds orange and blue.
Champaign school district officials have settled on a site for the new Central High School, and it's the one Athletic Director John Woods has wanted all along. Superintendent Judy Weigand said Thursday they will pursue the interstate drive site, eliminating Spalding Park and Dodds Park from consideration. Interstate drive will have the most space for athletic facilities and future growth. Right now, most central athletic sites are off-campus and some are even shared with other schools. "Allowing them the opportunity to stay on campus and do their thing is so important. The time that they lose traveling to all of our off-campus sites is time away from their family, time away from after school help, time away from homework, and it's just time lost. Now it's going be really neat to be able to provide those opportunities - an all-inclusive campus for all of our kids and the community", said Woods. The district has already purchased the land needed on interstate drive. The board will now decide whether to put a referendum on the November ballot.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Central grad Kam Rowan is continuing the tradition of Champaign-Urbana stars playing Division-I basketball, and he is staying in-state to do it. Rowan announced Friday he will continue his basketball career at Western Illinois University in Macomb. Rowan averaged nearly 11 points and 3 assists per game for the Maroons, who made it all the way to the sectional final. He should be able to compete for some early playing time for a Western Illinois team that finished 10-20 last year.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Central High School will have a new girls basketball coach this year, and Aaron Ratka held his first open gym Friday night to meet some of his new players for the first time. Ratka is a former Division-III player, who spent last season as an assistant coach for the Judah Christian girls. He says his goals for this season will develop as the team gets together, but he had one clear message for the girls Friday.
ST. JOSEPH, Ill. - St. Joseph-Ogden grad Hunter Hart did not reach an agreement with the Baltimore Orioles, so instead he will pitch for Kaskaskia Community College next year. Hart was drafted by the Orioles in the 37th round last month, and he had until 4:00 pm Friday to sign. Hart had originally signed with Indiana, but now by attending Kaskaskia he can re-enter the draft next year.
BLOOMINGTON, Ill. - IHSA leaders feel like they are being unfairly singled out while they await word on if - and when - they will be called in for another hearing as state leaders investigate their transparency and financial accountability. They were scheduled for a hearing in Chicago last week, but it was canceled and has not been rescheduled. At the first hearing in Springfield the IHSA was not given sufficient time to call any of the witnesses they had arranged and were told they would not be allowed to call any witnesses at a second hearing. IHSA assistant executive director Kurt Gibson sat down with WCIA 3 to talk about it, and he says the state isn't treating his organization fairly.
GEORGETOWN, Ill. - To some people it's just a bucket of coal - but to football fans in Our Town Georgetown it means much more than that. And the tradition goes back long before any of the current players were born. WCIA 3's Bret Beherns took a trip to Georgetown for a history lesson in one of the best rivalries Central Illinois.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - South Carolina is the latest school to offers St. Thomas More star Tori McCoy. The Gamecocks offered McCoy on Wednesday. ESPN ranks McCoy as the No. 5 recruit nationally in the 2016 class. The junior-to-be holds more than a dozen offers including Illinois, Michigan State and Ohio State.
MAROA, Ill. - Okaw Valley leaders woke up Tuesday morning with some work to do. We first told you last night Maroa-Forsyth has voted to leave the Okaw and join the Sangamo Conference starting in 2016. WCIA 3's Matt Wettersten has more on what it all means, and why Okaw leaders are now desperate to find a replacement.
MAROA, Ill. - Maroa-Forsyth is leaving the Okaw Valley Conference and will join the Sangamo Conference starting in the 2016-2017 school year. The school board voted Monday night to accept the Sangamo's invitation. The Trojans were one of just six schools set to compete in the new Okaw Valley. Maroa will now be in the Okaw for just two more seasons before heading to the Sangamo. Trojans' athletic director Josh Jostes told WCIA 3 that a "nomination to decline the Sangamo's invite" failed by a 3-4 vote before the board later voted overwhelmingly to accept the Sangamo invite. Jostes says the Sangamo will be a good fit from an enrollment standpoint, but says it will be "bittersweet" leaving the Okaw.
WCIA 3's Bret Beherns talks with IHSA Associate Executive Director Kurt Gibson as Champaign-Urbana prepares a bid to bring the IHSA State Basketball Tournament back to State Farm Center.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - As district administrators try to pick the best location for Central's new high school, Central athletic director John Woods knows exactly which one he prefers. Woods says the Interstate site will be far better than the Spalding Park site when it comes to the future of the school and its extracurricular activities.
Monticello quarterback Brandon Wildman is working hard during the off-season to help the Sages in the fall. He's been competing at camps and is catching the eye of college coaches.
WINDSOR -- Four students remember great times at Windsor High School.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - If Champaign-Urbana wants to bring the IHSA state basketball tournament back to State Farm Center, it won't be easy. And it will have to be a joint effort between the local tourism departments, business leaders and most importantly the University of Illinois. The three entities will form a committee later this summer to consider bidding on both the boys and girls state finals. They will bid on at least one.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The City of Champaign and the University of Illinois will work together to bring the IHSA state basketball tournament back to Champaign. The IHSA opened up the bidding Monday for the tournaments beginning with the 2015-16 season and running through the 2019-20 season. Jayne DeLuce, President and CEO of Visit Champaign County, says they're considering bidding on both the boys and girls tournaments, but will definitely bid on at least one. The U of I hosted the boys state tournament for 77 years before losing it to Peoria after the 1995 season. It has been in Peoria ever since.
BLOOMINGTON, Ill. - The IHSA announced Monday it will delay the implementation of the new multiplier waiver and success factor until the 2015-2016 school year. The move was made at the IHSA Board of Directors' regularly scheduled meeting Monday in Bloomington. The success factor, aka "The Bump," would bump non-boundaried schools up a class beyond their multiplier if they have won two state trophies in a four-year period. The "success factor" would have send the St. Thomas More girls basketball team up to Class 3A. Instead they will now stay in 2A next season.
Maroa-Forsyth High School is discussing an option to move from the Okaw Valley Conference to the Sangamo.