I’ma roll right into it. Key Pointers:
* With 12 seniors graduating out of the top 25 that leaves 12 new opportunities for new medalists.
* The new classifications didn’t shake things up much. Really only Dekalb and Marmion moved to 3A, while Danville is in 2A now, which leaves really only 11 new medals to individuals.
* The Team Race
1. The defending State Champ Belvidere North appears to be the team to beat once again after an impressive track season. The senior trio in Yunk, Menard, and Lee will be as strong as ever, and tough to break apart. The only downside to this empire team is the loss of 3 seniors from the top 7, with Will Crocker leaving with a medal and low points. On paper, it seems Chase Hill, the number 6, with slip into the number 4 position. 5-7 appears to be up for grabs and this is the opportunity for a young underclassmen to prove them-self.
2. State Runner-Up Glenbard South loses only 1 senior from 2011, their number 3, with Wold and Singleton returning low points. If the team fills in the number 3 spot just as well as last year, and the young 2011 team develops into great upperclassmen, I don’t see why anyone should count this team out of the 1st place trophy.
3. 2011 3rd place winner Normal U-High, like the first two teams, loses little bang from their roster. With their number 4 graduating, U-High brings back 6 guys from the top 7. Historically, this team surprises a fair amount of people, getting 2 or 3rd place the last 3 out of 5 years. With 3 seniors leading the pack, this team has to be training balls deep for the gold this year.
Teams of note
Springfield: Returning 5 of 7 with one 2011 medalist.
Yorkville: 6 returning from the top 7.
Mahomet Seymour: Returns 4 of top 7, 3 of top 5. Pretty dam* good times by Schaap early in track season.
East Moline (UT) : Returns 5 of top 7 with a predominant team of juniors, led by 2011 medalist.
With Michael Clevenger leaving, the race could be wide open. Tyler Yunk has to be the favorite on paper, as he has gotten second the last 2 years, along with his 9 03 3200 in late April. With 7 of the top 10 returning, it could be brutal. Good times by Mcirtney in track looks promising, and Jamison Dale set the 1600 2A state record just 3 weeks ago. Whoever it may be, the win won’t be easy.
So get at it