UPDATE: These rankings incorrectly list the head-to-head tiebreaker. It’s not total point differential within the conference. It’s point differential between those two teams in their head-to-head matchups. The Public League regrets the error. UPDATED
1. Simeon (18-1) 1
The difference between the top-three this week is razor thin. The Wolverines were upset by Bogan on Jan. 18, but they remain No. 1 in the rankings because they beat Whitney Young on a neutral court and won the Pontiac Holiday Tournament, which included Curie.
2. Whitney Young (14-4) 2
The Dolphins had a great week. They won at Orr by nine, won by 17 at Farragut and then beat highly-regarded Joliet West by nine on a neutral court. They have a 1.5-game lead in the Red-West and are rolling.
3. Curie (18-2) 3
The Condors’ have a Red-Central showdown with Kenwood at home on Thursday night. The Broncos are currently one game behind Curie in the conference race. In past years, this game likely would have been for the conference title — the Condors will likely be 9-0 entering the game, and the Broncos will likely be 8-1 — but keep in mind that the conference tiebreaker has changed.
When teams are tied and have split their head-to-head matchups, the conference champion is no longer decided by the team that won the second matchup. It’s now decided by point differential within the conference.
Kenwood is +117, entering this week. Curie is +346.
Even if the Broncos pull off an upset on Thursday, the Condors will in all likelihood still win the Red-Central.
4. Morgan Park (13-3) 5
The Mustangs travel to Simeon on Tuesday with a chance to win the Red-South outright. Both teams are 7-1 in the conference, currently, and the Wolverines’ loss to Bogan takes the point-differential tiebreaker out of play.
5. Uplift (17-4) 6
The Titans are rolling right now. They’re coming off of a 4-0 week that included wins over Marshall, Von Steuben, Lane Tech and U-High.
Demarius Jacobs also did this.
— Demarius Jacobs (@Dj15__) January 21, 2017
6. Orr (11-3) 4
Whitney Young beat the Spartans on Jan. 18, which was their first loss at home in three years, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.
7. North Lawndale (16-4) 8
The Phoenix went 4-0 last week, but they are still in search for a signature win over a top-flight team. They’ll have an opportunity to get it at Whitney Young on Wednesday evening. The Dolphins edged North Lawndale 88-86 on Dec. 14.
8. Bogan (13-6) 10
The Bengals pulled off one of the biggest upsets of the season when they defeated Simeon 83-64 on Jan. 19. It was especially impressive, given how the Wolverines dismantled Bogan en route to a 30-point win in December.
9. Kenwood (14-5) 7
The Broncos recorded a solid win over Hyde Park on Tuesday, Jan. 17, but were upset by Downers Grove South (12-9) later in the week.
This week’s game at Curie will be crucial for Kenwood. It’s unlikely that the Broncos will win the Red-Central even if they upset the Condors, as was explained in the Curie section above. But Kenwood is aiming to win city and state championships. A win over the Condors — or even a down-to-the-wire game — would be a big step with the city playoffs looming.
10. Hyde Park (12-6) 9
The Thunderbirds couldn’t handle Proviso East’s pressure in the fourth quarter on Saturday afternoon. The Pirates stormed back from a double-digit deficit to beat Hyde Park 53-48.
11. Brooks (12-8) 12
(See the Vocational section.)
12. Vocational (10-8) 14
The Battle of Vincennes is on Tuesday and that will dominate the city’s attention that night, but the Cavaliers’ game at Brooks is poised to be really, really good. It includes two quality teams with talented guards. The Eagles beat the Cavaliers in two overtimes the first time they played.
If you can’t get in to Simeon on Tuesday night, Brooks-Vocational is a good alternative.
13. Farragut (8-6) 11
The Admirals were upset by Butler on Sunday, Jan. 22, and their week doesn’t get any easier. They host Orr on Wednesday and a potentially-dangerous Clark squad the following night. Farragut then goes on the road to North Lawndale on Friday evening.
14. Westinghouse (8-10) 13
Close games have been the Warriors’ Achilles’ heel in the Red-West this season. They lost 44-41 to North Lawndale on Friday night. Their record is now 0-4 in Red-West games decided by five points or fewer.
15. Lincoln Park (11-8) 15
One of the interesting aspects of the CPS 2016-17 rules and regulation being published this week is it includes potential first-round match-ups in the city playoffs. If Lincoln Park remains in second place in the Red-North, it would play the winner of the White-South in the first round. That will be either Urban Prep-Englewood or Perspectives-Calumet in what has the potential to be a very intriguing game.
16. Butler (9-3) 18
The Lynx earned one of their biggest wins of the season on Sunday night when they defeated Farragut 64-61 at Whitney Young.
17. Schurz (14-4) 20
The Bulldogs beat Mather by 24 in a must-win conference game on Friday, Jan. 20. The following afternoon, they defeated Mundelein at the United Center. Not a bad 24 hours.
18. Dunbar (6-6) 17
Karl Blanton scored 35 points against Curie last week. The Mightymen lost that game by 16, which was 63 points better than when they played the Condors on Dec. 13.
19. Collins (16-4) 19
The Warriors now have a three-game lead in the White-West. A win at Perspectives-MSA/Joslin on Wednesday would clinch the conference championship.
20. Mather (8-5) 16
The Rangers are now in a tie with Schurz atop the White-North, as The Public League wrote last week.
The Rangers enter this week behind by 71 points in the point-differential tiebreaker, but they are scheduled to play Roosevelt on Wednesday. It’s a game they’re supposed to win. They need to do so by as much as possible. It will be interesting to see how long the Rangers leave their starters in on Jan. 25, if the game goes as planned.
Five on the verge (no particular order): Perspectives-Calumet (13-6) Hubbard (10-0), Raby (9-3), Prosser (10-10) and Urban Prep-Englewood (12-7).