The Sun-Times is counting down the 50 high school basketball programs with the most wins during the decade.
When high school basketball fans think back to the 1980s, programs like Quincy, Providence St. Mel, East St. Louis Lincoln and the arrival of city powers King and Simeon are easy to think back on.
The 1990s brought us memorable basketball giants in Peoria Manual and Thornton, a few steamrolling Proviso East teams and the continued dominance of King.
The first 10 years of the 2000s included Glenbrook North, Peoria High and the beginning of a Simeon juggernaut.
This list is comprised of the 50 winningest programs over the past 10 years, starting with the 2010-11 season and concluding with the 2019-20 season. Every team in every class throughout the Chicago area will be broken down in a variety of ways. But total wins, with winning percentage used as tie-breaker, determined the rankings.
We present No. 18 Orr today and will add one program a day going forward.
18. ORR: 216-68
Decade’s biggest storyline: One of the potential headlines the pandemic prevented from happening was Orr winning a fourth straight state championship last March. But there are still three titles to celebrate.
This program, which arrived at the start of the decade with a star player in Myke Henry, won state championships in 2017, 2018 and 2019. And coach Lou Adams and the Spartans were primed and ready to win another one. Orr advanced to the Class 2A state semifinals this past season before the plug was pulled on the season.
The breakthrough team in 2016-17 was led by a host of underclassmen. The most dominant team in 2017-18 featured a senior group featuring Dannie Smith, Raekwon Drake, Chase Adams and Ty Mosley.
As a Class 2A team the 2017-18 Orr team beat big school basketball powers Young twice, Proviso East, Fenwick, St. Joseph, Bogan, Curie and St. Louis Vashon before winning the state championship over Winnebago 76-49.
Underrated highlight: How many high school programs have a full-fledged, highly-acclaimed documentary filmed about them?
“Shot In the Dark,” which was nominated for Outstanding Long Sports Documentary at the 40th annual sports Emmys, was a moving and emotional film that followed the Orr basketball program for two years. The film was broadcast nationally on Fox in 2017.
Player of the Decade: Myke Henry (2011)
All-Decade Team: Myke Henry (2011), Jamal McDowell (2013), Lou Adams Jr. (2014), Dannie Smith (2018) and Raekwon Drake (2018)
Other decade highlights
-For the majority of the decade Orr played in one of the state’s toughest conferences, the rugged Red-West/North, and won or at least shared five league titles.
–Orr won the 2017 Proviso West Holiday Tournament.
-The Spartans reached the city title game for the first time in program history in 2018, falling to Simeon 69-59.