Bailey, Day stay on final list by Rivals

One item is clear about the Class of 2013 Illinois football will sign in two weeks.

It's not loaded with blue-chippers or high school players who overwhelm recruiting analysts with their skill set.

Rivals.com released its final rankings for the Class of 2013 on Tuesday with National Signing Day fast approaching on Wednesday, Feb. 6.

Not spectacular by any means but not subpar either is probably an apt way to describe head coach Tim Beckman's first full recruiting class at Illinois.

All the stars listed next to a high school player's name now might not mean much by the time their college career winds down.

The biggest element to watch with the Class of 2013 is how Beckman and his staff develop players who, while solid high school players, don't exactly jump out among the rest of their Big Ten brethren.

Recruiting rankings, however, are an inexact science. They're all projections on what players could possibly become once they hit the college ranks.

Of the 26 players Illinois has in its ever-fluctuating class (defensive back Reon Dawson and safety Joshua Jones both de-committed in the last week, with Illinois picking up two replacements in the defensive secondary in Crete-Monee (Ill.) High School's Jaylen Dunlap and St. Thomas Aquinas (Fla.) High School's James Crawford, both two-star recruits), 10 are already on campus, having enrolled in the spring semester. This should certainly help them be better prepared once the summer arrives and the rest of the class arrives in Champaign-Urbana.

Speculation abounds about the possibility of Chicago Simeon High School linebacker Reggie Spearman not sticking with Illinois (Iowa and Minnesota are possible options) or Lincoln-Way Central (Ill.) High School defensive end Evan Panfil switching his commitment as well (possibly Purdue).

Of the 26 players who are still, as we speak, verbally committed to Illinois, only two are ranked among the top 250 players in the Class of 2013, according to Rivals.

Bolingbrook (Ill.) High School quarterback Aaron Bailey and Darby (Ohio) High School athlete Caleb Day stand out on the list, and have since Rivals unveiled its initial Class of 2013 rankings.

Bailey, whose senior season was hindered by a sprained medial collateral ligament in his right knee that he suffered during Week 5, checked in at No. 159.

Previously he had been listed at No. 147 when rankings were released in August before he fell to No. 160 in December after his senior season ended.

Day, who could be used either at a wide receiver or in the defensive secondary at Illinois, whichever constitutes a greater need most likely, is slated in at No. 218.

Previously Day had been slotted at No. 211 in August and was at No. 213 in December.

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coryfor3 wrote on January 23, 2013 at 11:01 am

Sounds like our future is secure.


Securing a place in the bottom 2 of the Big "10"