By Brad Spencer
Residency issues aren't uncommon at OPRF High School. Students have falsely enrolled at the school while living in Chicago or elsewhere outside District 200. But parents living in Oak Park and clandestinely sending their kid to a public school in Chicago? It's a bit unusual … unless it has to do with high school basketball.
It's no secret that Erick Locke is a hoops phenom. He's been ripping through defenses since he was a whippersnapper, which wasn't that long ago. Just a few years back, he led the seventh grade team at Oak Park's Gwendolyn Brooks Middle School to a conference title by averaging 15 points per game. He was a sixth grader at the time. And he's pretty much drawn interest from Division I colleges ever since.
Locke, who has starred at the AAU level, last season played on another Brooks team. The six-foot point guard was a sophomore for Gwendolyn Brooks College Prep School, a Chicago public school where his father, Bobby, was the head coach. During his freshman season, he recorded a double-double of 28 points and 10 assists in Brooks' 66-55 win over Perspective-Calumet.
It's been reported that such colleges as Northern Illinois, Illinois State, DePaul, Xavier, Loyola, Bradley, Missouri State, and Butler have shown interest in the younger Locke.
But as of right now, he's in limbo. Last month, Bobby Locke was fired from the head coaching position at Brooks, and the Chicago Tribune recently reported it was due to residency issues that involved his son. The Lockes apparently live in Oak Park, but listed the Chicago address of a relative so Erick could be eligible to attend Brooks, according to the Tribune report.
Whether or not Erick Locke, an honor student while at Brooks College Prep, will be attending OPRF High School next fall is still up in the air.