Developing a reputation for having a great defense is something the Illinois coaching staff is clearly shooting for. They want to build a legendary group that dominates on the defensive side of the ball. Snagging a player like Kendrick Blackshire would help expedite that process.
Blackshire is a 6-foot-2, 250-pound inside linebacker from Duncanville High School and resides in Duncanville, Texas. He is rated as a four-star recruit.
The number of teams coming for Blackshire is incredible. The kid has roughly 29 scholarship offers. But he wanted to narrow down which teams he is seriously looking at. So, on April 22nd, Blackshire cut his list to just six teams. The six programs vying for his commitment include Oklahoma, Baylor, Texas A&M, LSU, Alabama, and Illinois.
Being in the mix for Blackshire’s commitment is exciting. Those other five programs are impressive, so this will be a tough recruitment to win. But I think the Illini have a legit shot at landing this top 150 recruit for the class of 2021.
Illinois has a head coach in Lovie Smith who knows what it takes to be an NFL caliber defensive player. He coached NFL Hall of Famer Brian Urlacher and soon-to-be Hall of Famer Lance Briggs. Lovie’s NFL pedigree must carry some weight with recruits.
I think the Illini have a shot here too because of their previous recruiting abilities. They were able to land Shammond Cooper who was a top 300 linebacker. Illinois also landed Marquez Beason in the last couple of classes. Beason was a top 150 recruit from the state of Texas, and he finished his high school career up at Duncanville High School.