2017-'18 Season Coverage
updated: 2/6/2014 7:39 PM

Scattered thoughts on a busy season

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  • The answer to continued movement between the Upstate Eight and DuPage Valley conferences might be a merger.

      The answer to continued movement between the Upstate Eight and DuPage Valley conferences might be a merger.
    Paul Michna | Staff Photographer

  • Chrissy Baird of Wheaton North brings one to the net during the Wheaton North at Naperville North girls basketball game Tuesday.

      Chrissy Baird of Wheaton North brings one to the net during the Wheaton North at Naperville North girls basketball game Tuesday.
    Paul Michna | Staff Photographer


Nothing upsets Eyes on Five more than postponed basketball games.

Whether it's cold or snow this winter, something always seems to be getting in the way of a seamless season. Save the cancellations for the spring, we say!

This week we scatter our hoop thoughts as we (snow) drift closer to the playoffs.

1. Together again:

The saga between the DuPage Valley Conference and the Upstate Eight Conference continued last week when we learned Glenbard North was looking into a possible jump from the DVC to the UEC.

To recap the last couple years, West Chicago went from the DVC to the UEC and Lake Park from the UEC to the DVC. Last spring Glenbard East and West Aurora announced they were moving from the DVC to the UEC while earlier this school the three District 204 schools -- Metea Valley, Neuqua Valley and Waubonsie Valley -- announced they were shifting from the UEC to the DVC.

The back and forth between the leagues has become comical. If Glenbard North ends up moving, by 2015-16 you'll see half of last school year's DVC in the UEC and four former UEC schools in the DVC.

But have no fear. We've come up with the perfect solution to the conference jumping: merger.

It's time to create a DuKane Conference encompassing all the schools of the DVC and UEC, and then divide the 22 schools into divisions. Bring in others if interested.

We'll leave the details -- and there are many -- to the administrators.

But let's get it done. It's time.

2. What next?

Maybe it was the leaked intel that Glenbard North was considering a move, but in the last week the conference chatter has drawn close to the vest.

The chatter's definitely out there, though.

For those thinking Glenbard North and Lake Park might jump to the UEC together, it'd only happen if the UEC can find a third school to maintain an even number. One or three, that's the deal.

If it's one school, it'd be Glenbard North if the Panthers are willing to separate from Lake Park. If it's three schools, would Lake Park even be willing? Every indication we've received is that the Lancers have enjoyed their first year in the DVC.

As mentioned //basketball.dailyherald.com/article/20140130/sports/701309642/">last week, though, the future DVC landscape looks much different from the one the Lake Park anticipated when it agreed to join. A return to the UEC isn't out of the question.

If Glenbard North and Lake Park are willing to jump, who'd be a potential third? We've heard everything from Kaneland to Huntley to Hoffman Estates but, without the boring details, the list of potential suitors is smaller than you'd think.

As always, stay tuned.

3. California dreaming:

Since she was 9 years old and a friend of her mother's gave her a UCLA hat, Wheaton North senior Chrissy Baird has been a Bruins fan.

Next year she'll be more than a fan.

Baird will be a preferred walk-on as part of the No. 1 recruiting class in the nation, a class that features five players ranked in the top 100. She'll be No. 6, receiving no scholarship money, and she couldn't be happier.

"It's above my wildest dreams," she said.

"It was too good of an option to pass up," Baird added. "It's going to have it's challenges, but it's going to have it's big rewards."

Baird attended summer camps at UCLA the past three years and got to know coach Cori Close.

"Her and I are pretty close," Baird said.

Close explained the lack of scholarship money to Baird but also told Baird she would be welcome and wanted on the team.

"That will definitely present its challenges," Baird said.

It's a challenge she can't wait to begin.

"It's incredible. It's such a blessing," she said.

Baird has a link to the Los Angeles area. Mom Cheryl is from Santa Barbara, and brother David attends college there.

Then there's the weather.

"Every time I wake to snow in the morning, my mom is like, I don't want to hear it," Baird said. "I can't wait to wake up to sunny and 75."

4. Winter planting season:

The Class 3A and Class 4A seeds were announced Thursday, with few surprises.

At the Class 4A Addison Trail sectional WW South earned the top seed, followed by Downers Grove North, regional hosts Batavia and Wheaton North, then Geneva and Willowbrook.

At the Class 4A Joliet Central sectional NeuquaValley earned the No. 1 seed, with Bolingbrook up next. That's a change from past years that saw Bolingbrook as the prohibitive favorite and reflects the Raiders' change in fortune since coach Anthony Smith left for Homewood-Flossmoor. Oswego is third, Benet fourth and surprising Naperville North fifth.

At the Class 3A Glenbard South sectional, 24-2 Montini retains its usual top spot. Host Glenbard South is No. 2, and Wheaton Academy is No. 5.

The big-school pairings are to be posted at ihsa.org late Friday afternoon.

The Class 1A and Class 2A regionals start next week, with regional hosts IC Catholic Prep and Lisle each earning No. 1 seeds at their regionals.

5. Stat time:

Think you've had a tough season? Take a look at what Benet's boys team has endured.

This weekend the Redwings face Marist and Stevenson, teams with a combined 33-7 record. It's a continuing a trend for Benet (13-6) as it plays one of the state's toughest slate of games.

The Redwings, in fact, have played only one team with a losing record.

Follow Kevin on Twitter @kevin_schmit

Follow Orrin on Twitter @orrin_schwarz

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