High school basketball: Joliet West’s Jeremy Fears Jr. selected for the McDonald’s All-American game

Joliet West’s Jeremy Fears Jr. has been selected to play in the the prestigious McDonald’s All-American game.

The senior is the first Illinois player selected since Max Christie in 2021.

The last Chicago-area player to play in the games was Stevenson’s Jalen Brunson in 2015. Young’s DJ Steward was selected in 2020, but the games weren’t actually held due to COVID.

“It’s like he got the best of both worlds,” Jeremy Fears Sr. said. “He came home and got the opportunity to play with his brother and in his hometown and also managed to get the big time honor. People don’t forget this. It’s forever.”

Fears played at Joliet West as a freshman and then transferred to La Lumiere, a prep school in Indiana, when his sophomore season was delayed due to COVID. He achieved national prominence at La Lumiere, which plays on ESPN regularly.

Fears, who signed with Michigan State in November, won two gold medals playing with USA teams in the summer. He’s the highest-ranked player in the state, currently checking in at No. 20 on ESPN. It’s been nearly 30 years since a Joliet player reached those heights.

Michael Thompson, a Joliet native that attended Providence, was a McDonald’s All-American in 2002. He played at Duke.

Hinsdale native Matas Buzelis, who plays at Brewster Academy in NH, was also selected to play in this year’s game.

The McDonald’s All-American game, which was hosted in Chicago for many years recently, including last year at Wintrust Arena, will take place on March 28 at the Toyota Center in Houston.

Illinois McDonald’s All-Americans

Mark Aguirre, Westinghouse, 1978

Cliff Alexander, Curie, 2014

Eric Anderson, St. Francis de Sales, 1988

Nick Anderson, Simeon, 1986

Wayne Blackshear, Morgan Park, 2011

Jamie Brandon, King, 1990

Andre Brown, Leo, 2000

Dee Brown, Proviso East, 2002

Shannon Brown, Proviso East, 2003

Jalen Brunson, Stevenson, 2015

Max Christie, Rolling Meadows, 2021

Chris Collins, Glenbrook North, 1992

Sherron Collins, Crane, 2006

Brian Cook, Lincoln, 1999

Russell Cross, Manley, 1980

Deryl Cunningham, St. Joseph, 1987

Eddy Curry, Thornwood, 2001

Anthony Davis, Perspectives, 2011

Sean Dockery, Julian, 2002

Bruce Douglas, Quincy, 1982

Walter Downing, Providence, 1981

Michael Dunigan, Farragut, 2008

LaPhonso Ellis, East St. Louis Lincoln, 1988

Melvin Ely, Thornton, 1997

Jeremy Fears Jr., Joliet West, 2023

Ronnie Fields, Farragut, 1996

Bobby Frasor, Brother Rice, 2005

Kevin Garnett, Farragut, 1995

Marcus Griffin, Peoria Manual, 1997

Rashard Griffith, King, 1993

Teddy Grubbs, King, 1979

Lowell Hamilton, Providence-St. Mel, 1985

Phil Henderson, Crete-Monee, 1986

Bill Heppner, Crystal Lake, 1987

Ed Horton, Springfield Lanphier, 1985

Juwan Howard, Vocational, 1991

Richard Keene, Collinsville, 1992

Tom Kleinschmidt, Gordon Tech, 1991

Marcus Liberty, King, 1987

Shaun Livingston, Peoria Central, 2004

Corey Maggette, Fenwick, 1998

Roger McClendon, Champaign Centennial, 1984

Raymond McCoy, Bloom, 1979

Darius Miles, East St. Louis, 2000

Howard Nathan, Peoria Manual, 1991

Jahlil Okafor, Young, 2014

Jabari Parker, Simeon, 2013

Michael Payne, Quincy, 1981

Quentin Richardson, Young, 1998

Jereme Richmond, Waukegan, 2010

Glenn Rivers, Proviso East, 1980

Michael Robinson, Peoria Richwoods, 1996

Derrick Rose, Simeon, 2007

Jon Scheyer, Glenbrook North, 2006

Iman Shumpert, Oak Park, 2008

DJ Steward, Young, 2020

Barry Sumpter, Lovejoy, 1983

Daryl Thomas, St. Joseph, 1983

Deon Thomas, Simeon, 1989

Isiah Thomas, St. Joseph, 1979

Michael Thompson, Providence, 2002

Raymond Thompson, Argo, 1988

Tyler Ulis, Marian Catholic, 2014

Chuck Verderber, Lincoln, 1978

Antoine Walker, Mount Carmel, 1994

Frank Williams, Peoria Manual, 1998

Efrem Winters, King, 1982

Julian Wright, Homewood-Flossmoor, 2005

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