Looks Like University Of Illinois – Kendall Smith

Perhaps the biggest question facing Lovie Smith when it comes to recruiting: can he end ABI? Can he turn the tide so that recruits coming out of Chicago are no longer headed Anywhere But Illinois? His first move, landing Smalling and Smith (LLC), suggests that he can. [Read more…]

Looks Like University Of Illinois – Ricky Smalling

Let me just start with this. Using the composite rankings, the highest ranked player to pick Illinois last year was TE Zarrian Holcombe, who ranked #704 nationally. Ricky Smalling’s ranking on the composite list? #333. This is Lovie climbing up two or three rungs on the talent ladder. As it should be. [Read more…]

Looks Like University Of Illinois – Hardy Nickerson Jr.

Easily the biggest Illini player personnel moment since Ke’Shawn Vaughn grabbed the Illini hat at that press conference.  Just a gigantic commitment. Yes, he’s a fifth year transfer, so he’ll only have one season, but still, there are going to be a lot of Tom Cruises at the bottom of this post. [Read more…]

Looks Like University Of Illinois – Catching Up

As I’ve stated before, I stopped writing LLUOI posts for football commits this summer. With all the turmoil, especially after Beckman was fired, I expected many recruits to bail (and some to be Creaned). As of now, six have bailed, but after these two official visit weekends I think we have an idea of who will be in this class. So let’s catch up. [Read more…]

Looks Like University Of Illinois – Stanley Green

The return of the LLUOI.  Why was it gone?  Well, I expected a coaching change right about now.  With that, I expected many of the current commits to leave (or possibly not be re-offered by the new staff).  So I was waiting to see which players stuck before writing up how they’ll fit in with future rosters.  With all but one staying committed, let’s do this. [Read more…]

Looks Like University Of Illinois – Te’Jon Lucas

First, some housekeeping: now that I’m back from vacation the first order of business is to write the LLUOI for Te’Jon. So the Check The Tape post for this week won’t be up until tomorrow. But that’s OK, because it’s u-g-l-y and has no alibi.  That’s tomorrow, though. Let’s first talk point guards. [Read more…]

Looks Like University Of Illinois – Khalid Lewis

Not sure why, but this verbal reminded me of Dylan Ennis picking Oregon. Which might be an Illinois Basketball watershed moment. We obviously didn’t know it at the time (Tracy wasn’t injured – again – yet), but Ennis to Illinois could have been a game changer. Instead, the Villanova transfer picked Oregon back in May. And now, after Tracy’s injury, we’ve added Khalid Lewis. [Read more…]

Looks Like University Of Illinois – Griffin Palmer

Hey, I’ve seen him play! What do I remember about him? Nothing. He would have been a… sophomore when my son was a senior and their two high schools met in a conference game. So when I heard he verballed, I reached back to my memories to see if I could remember a tall, skinny sophomore tight end from DeSmet. I got nothing. This is going nowhere. [Read more…]

Looks Like University Of Illinois – Dominic Thieman

Recruit from schools that recruit. It’s #7 in the How To Find Sleeper Recruits guidebook. Many think that coaches recruit from schools like Glenville, St. Thomas Aquinas, and De La Salle because they want to get in good with the coaching staff or because the kids have been coached up. That’s part of the reason. Another reason: they’ve already done the recruiting. [Read more…]

Looks Like University Of Illinois – Mike Thorne Jr.

Six weeks ago, Jalen Coleman-Lands was probably the odds-on favorite for Big Ten Freshman of the Year. There was only one player, a raw PF headed to MSU, ranked ahead of him. Then Indiana, Maryland, and Michigan State all added five-star bigs.  Which means two things: JCL is now the fifth best frosh, and we really need someone to guard all these bigs. Enter Mike Thorne Jr. [Read more…]