2021 fall preview: Scouting the CCL/ESCC White division

De La Salle

2021 spring record: 1-4, 0-2 Orange

Coach: Mike Boehm

Worth noting: De La Salle has some serious experience returning on the offensive line. Gary Adcock (6-3, 305), DJ Montgomery (6-0, 250), James Taylor (6-1, 255) and Evan Smith (5-10, 235) are all returning starters on the offensive line. Montgomery was an All-Orange division performer. Taylor, Smith and Montgomery all have experience on the defensive line as well. ... RB/WR Ray Coffey is another returning all-conference performer. WR Dominic Richko and RB Julian Thomas also bring additional varsity experience to the offensive skill positions. Thomas is expected to start at linebacker, too. ... Coffey is a returning starter at defensive back, as are Alexandre Coleman and Adrian Diaz. ... De La Salle drew some tough crossover games with Joliet Catholic and Brother Rice on the schedule this season.

Fenwick

2021 spring record: 3-2, 1-2 White

Coach: Matt Battaglia

Worth noting: Fenwick’s senior class has a handful of potential Division I college players. WR Eian Pugh is committed to play at Illinois. QB Kaden Cobb will play at Ball State. WR Max Reese committed to Eastern Michigan on Saturday. OL Jimmy Liston has offers from Penn State, Arizona State and Texas Tech, among others. DE/OLB Suleiman Abuaqel received an offer from Bowling Green earlier this summer. ... DE Quin Wieties and OL/DL Rasheed Anderson bring experience to the defensive line. Anderson was an All-White division performer in the spring. ... RB Danny Kent brings a ton of experience to the backfield and was an All-White division performer in the spring. ... DBs Jacque Walls and Den Juette are returning to the secondary. Walls is committed to Division II Minnesota State. ... Junior TE/LB Pat Durkin contributed on varsity this spring as a sophomore.

Marmion

2021 spring record: 1-2, 1-1 White

Coach: Dan Thorpe

Worth noting: Unfortunately for the Cadets, Marmion saw the field only three times in the spring. They beat Fenwick and lost to Joliet Catholic and Naperville Central. Marmion wound up earning a second victory from a forfeiture by Naperville Central. ... Marmion brings back nearly its entire starting offensive line. OT Matt Harris, OG Jerred Durian, OT Bo Olsen and C Jakob Saunders will anchor the offense up front. ... WR Dane Pardridge, who is committed to Northern Illinois, and WR Anthony Kuceba both bring experience to split end and both were All-White division performers in the spring. ... Junior RB Josh Lim returns at running back. Given all the experience, Thorpe is hopeful for an explosive offense this fall. ... Defensively, Durian, and LB Jacob Bottarini are returning All-White division players. The Cadets return four starting defensive backs in Jackson Burroughs, Dan Chung, Luke Kuhn and Kuceba.

St. Ignatius

2021 spring record: 2-4, 0-2 White

Coach: Matt Miller

Worth noting: St. Ignatius has made five consecutive playoff appearances, but is still searching for its first IHSA playoff victory. The program has its highest football participation in program history, which is a solid sign for the future. The varsity team has 10 returning starters. ... OL/DL Damian Lassak, ILB/FB Vinny Rugai and OL/LS Emmet Rhoades are returning All-White division performers from the spring. Rugai and Rhoades earned the honors as sophomores. ... The Wolfpack defense will have plenty of returning experience. ILB Jack Clisham, S John Kemp, OLB Tony Tirado, OLB Jake Lo and CB Mike Gladden are all returning starters. ... On offense, RB Jack Molloy and OL Will Mulchrone are returning starters. ... Junior QB Coley McDonagh likely steps into the starting quarterback position. ... DL Justin Scott, S Henry Helms and WR Jack Cronin could take on bigger roles for the varsity this fall.

FIVE PLAYERS TO WATCH

  • Kaden Cobb, Fenwick, QB, sr.: Fenwick has a handful of D-I prospects, including at quarterback. Cobb will play at Ball State.
  • DJ Montgomery, De La Salle, OL/DL, sr.: Montgomery will lead the charge for De La Salle on both the offensive and defensive lines.
  • Dane Pardridge, Marmion, WR/DB, sr.: A Northern Illinois commit, Pardridge will give Marmion a weapon at split end.
  • Eian Pugh, Fenwick, WR, sr.: Pugh is a 6-foot-4, 170-pound playmaker who is committed to Illinois.
  • Vinny Rugai, St. Ignatius, ILB/FB, jr.: Rugai is a team captain as a junior. He is one of three returning all-conference performers for St. Ignatius.

SCHEDULES

De La SalleFenwickMarmionSt. Ignatius
Week 1vs. Agricultural Science; 7:30 p.m., Aug. 27vs. Morgan Park; 7:30 p.m., Aug. 27vs. Bishop McNamara; 7 pm., Aug. 27vs. Von Steuben; 7:30 p.m., Aug. 27
Week 2vs. Curie; 7:30 p.m., Sept. 3vs. Niles Notre Dame; 7:30 p.m., Sept. 3vs. Lake View; 7:30 p.m., Sept. 3at Bremen; 6 p.m., Sept. 3
Week 3at Joliet Catholic; 7:30 p.m., Sept. 10at Providence; 7:30 p.m., Sept. 10at Montini; 7:30 p.m., Sept. 10at St. Laurence; 7:30 p.m., Sept. 10
Week 4vs. Fenwick; 7:30 p.m., Sept. 17at De La Salle; 7:30 p.m., Sept. 17vs. St. Ignatius; 7:30 p.m., Sept. 17at Marmion; 7:30 p.m., Sept. 17
Week 5vs. Brother Rice; 7:30 p.m., Sept. 24vs. Loyola; 7:30 p.m., Sept. 24vs. Marist; 7:30 p.m., Sept. 24vs. Mount Carmel; 7:30 p.m., Sept. 24
Week 6at St. Ignatius; 7:30 p.m., Oct. 1vs. Marmion; 7:30 p.m., Oct. 1at Fenwick; 7:30 p.m., Oct. 1vs. De La Salle; 7:30 p.m., Oct. 1
Week 7vs. Marian Catholic; 7:30 p.m., Oct. 8vs. St. Patrick; 7:30 p.m., Oct. 8vs. Carmel; 7:30 p.m., Oct. 8vs. St. Viator; 7:30 p.m., Oct. 8
Week 8at Hope Academy; 7:30 p.m., Oct. 15at Marian Central; 7:30 p.m., Oct. 15at Leo; 1 p.m., Oct. 16at DePaul Prep; 7:30 p.m., Oct. 15
Week 9at Marmion; 7:30 p.m., Oct. 22at. St. Ignatius; 7:30 p.m., Oct. 22vs. De La Salle; 7:30 p.m., Oct. 22vs. Fenwick; 7:30 p.m., Oct. 22

FIVE CAN’T-MISS MATCHUPS

Week 1 – Bishop McNamara at Marmion: A big-time nonconference matchup to open the season.

Week 2 – Niles Notre Dame at Fenwick: These two filled an open nonconference spot on the schedule with another quality CCL/ESCC crossover game.

Week 5 – Loyola at Fenwick: Fenwick, with all its D-1 talent, will take on one of the conference’s top teams in a crossover matchup.

Week 9 – Fenwick at St. Ignatius: All four White division schools will kick off on Friday night with the division title likely on the line.

Week 9 – De La Salle at Marmion: These two had their matchup postponed last spring, but will finally meet on the gridiron.

STEVE SOUCIE’S PREDICTED FINISH

TeamRecord
Fenwick6-3
Marmion5-4
De La Salle4-5
St. Ignatius3-6
Sean Hammond

Sean Hammond

Sean is the Chicago Bears beat reporter for Shaw Media. He also contributes to high school football coverage at Friday Night Drive. Sean has covered various sports at the amateur, college and professional levels since 2012. He joined Shaw Media in 2016.