Illinois Football Recruiting Thread

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#1,528      
Do we have any interest in Enrique Cruz? Instate recruit who has been a fast riser, and is now ranked a 4 star by 247.
 
#1,529      
Risiek is from a pretty good football school producing Tyler Higbee, Mason Cole, Artavis Scott, Justin Strnad, Geaorge Campbell in the pros and numerous college players...Juggs and DE Bobby Williamson of Clemson from the S Carolina/Clemson brawl.

His highlight tape looks really good.
 
#1,530      
I am the biggest Illini football homer, and I always drink the orange Kool-Aid, but I am not optimistic about this recruiting class at this time. This class is the most important class since 2017 and we don't have much to show for it yet. We need players who are no-doubt future Power 5 starters, but I am not seeing enough of them come in. We are reaching on fringe player too early. We don't need "Ready Now" guys, but we do need future starters. Right now, we are stocking up on projects, and that makes me really nervous.

I picked 20 player that I guessed we'd land based on hype and how hard it seems we are going after them and charted them out below. I don't see how we can view this as positive when Minny, Rutgers, Purdue, Indiana are crushing us on the trail. Am I pessimistic? Please tell me I am.

Ready To Play Now
None

No-Doubt Future Starters
OG Brody Wisecarver
DB Daniel Edwards
WR Patrick Bryant
WR Jimmy Valsin (Optimistic that Hayes-Stoker pulls this out)
DE Keith Cooper (Would be a huge add)
RB Justin Johnson (Low confidence to land)
K/P Collyn Hopkins? Trace Hrgich? Jake Marion? (All would be fine with Ligs)


Potential Future Starters
DE Sedarius McConnell
OG Hutson Lillibridge (I think we land)
OG Zach Barlev (I think we land)
DT Denver Warren (I think we reoffer after prep)
QB Walter Simmons III (Optimistic, still think Collier decommits)

Projects
DB Prince Green
QB Samari Collier
LB Trevor Moffitt
DB Tavoris Miller (Projected to land)
LB Dylan Rosiek (Projected to land)
WR Theodore Lockley (Projected to land)
LB Dedrick Smith (Projected to land)
OG Trevor Timmons (Projected to land)
TE Cole Rusk (Need a TE, haven't really offered many)


I appreciate your take. But I think l is a future starter, I also don't think Moffitt, Collier, or Green are projects.

We are recruiting measurables: speed, quickness, athleticism, etc. Because these attributes are not teachable. Technically, anyone on the line is a project, because they need to get bigger before they can step in and make a difference. But Mcconell has the frame and looks really good. Green has the speed and athleticism, Moffitt is just an all around beast. I think Moffitt will surprise many on this board.

As for those we have not landed, I won't discuss them. But, ultimately, you want to redshirt all players their first year, and I think we are in good position to do so. I would like to see more solid receivers, but they are the easiest to find in the portal, especially with the opportunity for playing time, which we will have after this year.
 
#1,532      
I thing this is a good list.

Although these are not excuses, below are some of the rationale from Lovie on the pessimistic items.

1. Lovie likes the portal and will rely on the portal, because of this, we will never have full classes and the rankings won't be high. Also, Lovie is big on developing the man, so I don't envision him cutting bait with underperforming players, meaning we will not have full classes. If our team composite is high, I think we will be in a good position, but if we can't keep the composite high with transfers, then we will be in trouble.

2. With the talent landing at the top programs (and then not getting playing time) and rules loosening on transfers, the transfer market should be even better. When we have playing time available, this will be easy to use. When playing time is not readily available, this will be tough. Also, other teams will look to the transfer portal more and more, so although the market will get better, the competition may as well.

3. I would say the level of improvement of the roster is not bare minimum, but I would agree with that there is much to be desired.

4. Lovie wants to give qualified under recruited coaches an opportunity to shine. He has made that clear, particularly minority coaches, similar to the Dungy system. I doubt this changes.

5. This is something that Lovie will not change, but I don't like. He places his confidence in the players and doesn't manage the clock, etc. I doubt this changes, which is ok as long as we are winning. It won't be ok if we stop winning.
2. I'm hoping to find some articles later in the year comparing teams from different conferences who landed impactful transfers. I'm not paying attention to other programs enough to know how Illinois' utilization of the transfer portal compares.
3. I'm guessing by bare minimum he is referring to W/L record, not recruiting.
4. Miles Smith hire really sticks out here. Also Hardy Nickerson and Gil Byrd. I guess the jury is still out on some of the other coaches.
5. Besides in game decisions, you could also throw in his unwillingness to change the defense which has been horrid for several years now (outside of takeaways last year). I think most people have dropped this issue though because it's pretty clear that it won't change.
 
#1,533      
I appreciate your take. But I think l is a future starter, I also don't think Moffitt, Collier, or Green are projects.

We are recruiting measurables: speed, quickness, athleticism, etc. Because these attributes are not teachable. Technically, anyone on the line is a project, because they need to get bigger before they can step in and make a difference. But Mcconell has the frame and looks really good. Green has the speed and athleticism, Moffitt is just an all around beast. I think Moffitt will surprise many on this board.

As for those we have not landed, I won't discuss them. But, ultimately, you want to redshirt all players their first year, and I think we are in good position to do so. I would like to see more solid receivers, but they are the easiest to find in the portal, especially with the opportunity for playing time, which we will have after this year.

I get both sides. I am a little concerned about lack of talent in getting top 750 players outside of Wisecarver. I know we have redshirted many of the high rated players we have this past year. On the other hand, the players we have reached for in this class, some have some really nice measureables. For example, Moffit and Roziek look like they have elite speed at linebacker (Moffitt especially) along with high IQ for football. If reaching, these are the type of reaches I like.
 
#1,534      
I thing this is a good list.

Although these are not excuses, below are some of the rationale from Lovie on the pessimistic items.

1. Lovie likes the portal and will rely on the portal, because of this, we will never have full classes and the rankings won't be high. Also, Lovie is big on developing the man, so I don't envision him cutting bait with underperforming players, meaning we will not have full classes. If our team composite is high, I think we will be in a good position, but if we can't keep the composite high with transfers, then we will be in trouble.

2. With the talent landing at the top programs (and then not getting playing time) and rules loosening on transfers, the transfer market should be even better. When we have playing time available, this will be easy to use. When playing time is not readily available, this will be tough. Also, other teams will look to the transfer portal more and more, so although the market will get better, the competition may as well.

3. I would say the level of improvement of the roster is not bare minimum, but I would agree with that there is much to be desired.

4. Lovie wants to give qualified under recruited coaches an opportunity to shine. He has made that clear, particularly minority coaches, similar to the Dungy system. I doubt this changes.

5. This is something that Lovie will not change, but I don't like. He places his confidence in the players and doesn't manage the clock, etc. I doubt this changes, which is ok as long as we are winning. It won't be ok if we stop winning.
Not sure your last sentence is valid. We've had a losing record for 8 consecutive years.
 
#1,536      

Deleted member 656517

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Risiek is from a pretty good football school producing Tyler Higbee, Mason Cole, Artavis Scott, Justin Strnad, Geaorge Campbell in the pros and numerous college players...Juggs and DE Bobby Williamson of Clemson from the S Carolina/Clemson brawl.

His highlight tape looks really good.
This kid’s very underrated to me. His tape’s impressive, and the kid really knows how to tackle with the best of them
 
#1,537      
Forgottonia
Yeah idk why we haven’t offered this kid. Maybe we know he has no interest or we like where we are with Pickett/carsello.
I know we’ve been down this road and don’t need to rehash it again, but I still don’t see the downside in offering regardless. It almost feels foolish to not even if he doesn’t have interest. Guess that’s why I’m not a head coach.
 
#1,538      

Deleted member 746648

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I just found this website I think some will find interesting that breaks down each p5 teams 2020 commits by position, state and who they win recruiting battles against the most. Unlike teams like Rutgers or some other lower p5 teams we are mostly beating other p5 teams for recruits. I couldn't find a team that regularly beat us for recruits. That probably has something to do with how few offers we give out though.
 
#1,539      
2. I'm hoping to find some articles later in the year comparing teams from different conferences who landed impactful transfers. I'm not paying attention to other programs enough to know how Illinois' utilization of the transfer portal compares.
3. I'm guessing by bare minimum he is referring to W/L record, not recruiting.
4. Miles Smith hire really sticks out here. Also Hardy Nickerson and Gil Byrd. I guess the jury is still out on some of the other coaches.
5. Besides in game decisions, you could also throw in his unwillingness to change the defense which has been horrid for several years now (outside of takeaways last year). I think most people have dropped this issue though because it's pretty clear that it won't change.

So even though we were in the top couple teams in TOs last year, you think we had a horrible defense? Interesting view...
 
#1,541      
When looking at the film of this class I am extremely surprised at the Florida guys (Rosiek, Moffitt, Edwards, and Bryant) as they all seem vastly underrated. On the other hand not so impressed with the Georgia or Texas commits so far. Interesting how they keep pulling these guys with crazy athleticism from the sunshine state.
 
#1,542      

Deleted member 746648

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So even though we were in the top couple teams in TOs last year, you think we had a horrible defense? Interesting view...
Our defense improved a lot last year but we were still below average as a whole.
(54) scoring defense 26.2 points
(77) Yards per game 408.5
(62) Red zone defense 83%
 
#1,544      
Moffitt is a guy I really like. His size has to be the reason he’s not ranked higher, right?
It’s exposure and offers. A lot of guys have been limited with the amount of times they could be seen with the cancelation of camps. Lots of guys like moffit and rosiek are ranked lower cause they never got to go to mega camps and rack up more offers.
 
#1,545      
When looking at the film of this class I am extremely surprised at the Florida guys (Rosiek, Moffitt, Edwards, and Bryant) as they all seem vastly underrated. On the other hand not so impressed with the Georgia or Texas commits so far. Interesting how they keep pulling these guys with crazy athleticism from the sunshine state.

McConnell will be very good who is from GA. He is quick of the ball. Put on some good weight with Lou , he will be fine. I haven't watched any of Prince's film yet.
 
#1,548      
Let's hope so. He looks like a good recruit. Can't help but take FL speed. I still do not understand why ILL HS kids don't want to come to Champaign especially the top 10-12. Yes, I understand when ND, MI, OSU come in it is hard to compete with them. If they want to go elsewhere then get the FL, GA, and TX kids. HS football is different. Ric Flair was a great showman. I hope to see a few more Ric Flairs because diamonds are forever and so are the four horsemen.
 
#1,549      
Cincinnati, OH
It’s exposure and offers. A lot of guys have been limited with the amount of times they could be seen with the cancelation of camps. Lots of guys like moffit and rosiek are ranked lower cause they never got to go to mega camps and rack up more offers.


Camp performance is a zero sum game. Some attendees perform well, therefore others do not. The likely outcome from the lack of football this summer (and this fall?) is you are going to see greater variance on player performance based on ratings and team landing spots. If it was easy to project certain recruits would have performed well, coaching staffs would do the same (and made offers in a response).
 
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