Illinois in Liddell's top three

Illinois in Liddell's top three

CHAMPAIGN — Two down.

Three to go.

And yes, Illinois is one of the three schools still in the running to land reigning News-Gazette All-State Player of the Year and Illinois Mr. Basketball E.J. Liddell. The 6-foot-7, 220-pound forward out of Belleville West narrowed his list of possible schools — again — on Wednesday night.

More than a month after unveiling a final five of Illinois, Kansas State, Missouri, Ohio State and Wisconsin, the Class of 2019 prospect cut the Wildcats and Badgers from his possible destinations Wednesday in the latest update to his recruitment, once again taking to Twitter to make the announcement.

Liddell led Belleville West to a Class 4A state title this past March, averaging 20.8 points, 8.2 rebounds, 5.9 blocks and 2.8 assists for the Maroons. He followed that up with a second season on the Nike EYBL circuit, where he put up 14 points, 6.7 rebounds and 1.8 blocks per game for a 13-8 Brad Beal Elite team that qualified for Peach Jam.

Wednesday night’s announcement comes on the heels of Liddell moving up his official visit to Illinois next weekend. Initially slated for mid-October, Liddell is now slated to visit Illinois starting Sept. 21. Liddell’s presence adds to a momentous recruiting weekend for the Illini, with five-star center Oscar Tshiebwe and breakout four-star wing Terrence Shannon Jr. also expected on campus.