Predictions for the Rivals Camp Series in Chicago
The regional portion of the largest and most-attended Rivals Camp Series of all-time comes to a conclusion this upcoming weekend in Chicago, the 13th camp stop and 14th combine stop on the tour. Here is a look at the top storylines heading into the Windy City weekend.
SOME WILL IMPRESS BEFORE RIVALS100 FIVE-STAR CHALLENGE
Nearly half of the roster for the Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge has already been determined through on-site selections, and the rest of the roster will be selected over the coming week. As the last regional stop on the Rivals 3 Stripe Camp, the prospects competing this weekend will have the final shot to make their cases for consideration.
The Chicago stop will feature four-stars and Rivals100 prospects, but it also has a number of prospects who will be looking to come from a lower or unranked territory and put their names in contention, like a then-unranked and lightly recruited Louisville linebacker Jared Casey did at the Nashville camp last weekend.
IOWA COMMITS LOOK TO IMPRESS
The Iowa Hawkeyes have built an eight-man class in 2019, and three of those prospects are expected to attend Sunday’s camp. The most well-known is offensive tackle Ezra Miller, who was the first pledge in Iowa’s 2019 class more than a year ago. Tight end Logan Lee from western Illinois, close to the state border with Iowa, was the second commit, while safety Sebastian Castro just joined the group in April.
Miller and Lee are prospects we had a chance to see last off-season, but this will be our first in-person look at them following their junior season. Castro is a prospect we have only seen on film, and being the highest rated of the group may have the best shot at earning a fourth star.
A NATIONAL FIELD WILL COMPETE
Prospect from the Chicagoland area have traditionally been among the country’s most willing to go to school away from home. One reason for that is because Chicago is no more than a couple hours flight from pretty much every college campus in the country, and with two major airports, there are plenty of direct flights to points across the continent.
Conversely, Chicago is an easy place to get to and being the last stop on the Rivals Camp Series trail it tends to be a catch-all for top prospects who were unable to attend previous stops. While regional states Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, Michigan, Missouri and Minnesota will contribute the bulk of the roster, Sunday’s event is expected to have 14 different states represented from New York to Kansas.
ST. LOUIS WILL REPRESENT AGAIN
With Nashville and Chicago being equidistant from St. Louis, several prospects from the city ended up going to last weekend’s Rivals 3 Stripe Camp in Nashville because it worked better with their schedules. Wide receivers Jameson Williams, C.J. Boone and Maurice Massey performed well last weekend, setting the stage for a larger contingent of St. Louis prospects who are expected to attend Sunday’s event in Chicago.
The more than two dozen St. Louis-area prospects headed to Chicago this weekend include Trinity Catholic Rivals100 athletes Isaiah Williams and Teriyon Cooper, as well as Rivals250 teammate Marcus Washington.
ALL EYES WILL BE ON FRESHMAN DE
One of the prospects we are most interested to see this weekend is class of 2021 defensive end JC Latham from Waukesha (Wisc.) Catholic Memorial. The freshman has already generated five Power Five offers from Iowa, Iowa State, Michigan, Minnesota and his home-state Wisconsin Badgers.
The freshman's season film is outstanding and shows a player playing well beyond his years. He certainly appears to be a once-in-a-decade type for the state of Wisconsin, but the first time seeing a prospect like that in-person is always anticipated. At 6-foot-6 and reportedly near 250 pounds now, Latham should have no issues competing from a physical standpoint. It will be interesting to see how he responds among a group as talented as the one he’ll face on Sunday, though.