Illinois football has not had a commitment from a 5-star prospect since wide receiver Arrelious Benn and defensive end Martez Wilson, each top 15 recruits, pledged to the program in 2007. Both players went on to play in the NFL.
It took more than a decade, but the wait for another 5-star player to commit to the Fighting Illini seems over. Five-star quarterback Isaiah Williams — the No. 28 overall prospect for 2019, according to the 247Sports composite — committed to Illinois via Twitter on Friday morning.
— Isaiah Williams (@i_williams11) March 23, 2018
Williams, ranked as the third-best athlete in the Class of 2019, had more than 60 Division I offers but chose Illinois over programs such as Oklahoma, Michigan, Ohio State and Alabama. The Fighting Illini were one of a small number of programs to recruit Williams as a quarterback, which is where he wants to play.
His commitment could be a game changer for the Fighting Illini program, which has not had a winning season since 2011. Williams, who plays at Trinity Catholic in St. Louis, is the top-ranked Missouri recruit and the reigning Gatorade State Player of the Year.
He’s the third Illinois commit for 2019, joining 4-star athlete Marquez Beason and 3-star tight end Griffin Moore.
— Jeremy Werner (@JWerner247) March 23, 2018