Oct 6, 2012; Madison, WI, USA; Illinois Fighting Illini quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase (2) throws during the first quarter against the Wisconsin Badgers at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Illinois Football Roundtable: Is Aaron Bailey the Future After Nathan Scheelhaase?

The staff of Writing Illini gives their opinions about whether or not freshman Aaron Bailey is the future at the quarterback position after Nathan Scheelhaase is gone. Bailey was recruited this past season from Bolingbrook High School in Bolingbrook, Illinois.

Nov 10, 2012; Champaign, IL, USA; Illinois Fighting Illini quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase (2) before the game against the Minnesota Golden Gophers at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bradley Leeb-USA TODAY Sports

Ricky: Aaron Bailey has the talent and potential to be the future starter for the Fighting Illini after Nathan Scheelhaase is gone. Because of the radio show I hosted, I had the pleasure of following Bailey’s senior season as a high school quarterback. The only concern I have about the young quarterback is the injury bug. Last season at Bolingbrook, Bailey suffered a sprained MCL in a game against Lincoln-Way East. He missed two games before returning to the field.

Illinois should redshirt Aaron Bailey in 2013. Not just because of having so many quarterbacks already, but to give him a season to get healthier. Yes, the injury might not be very serious, but knee injuries are sensitive injuries.

Because of this, Tim Beckman should redshirt Bailey and let him get healthier while learning a new college offense.

Austin: Aaron Bailey could be the next quarterback for the Illini, but that all depends on who may or may not come to Illinois (are you hearing me, Wes Lunt?). If Lunt does in fact come to Illinois, Bailey would have to out preform him to be the starter, but that is all speculation. If all stays as is, I fully expect Bailey to be behind center for the Illini in 2014, if not some of 2013, depending on injuries to Scheelhaase and O’Toole. And for the record, I am a big Bailey fan, and think he could be a great quarterback for the Illini, so I’m hoping to see him under center.

Ryan: The Illini would do well to redshirt Aaron Bailey this season to give him time to mature both physically and mentally. While it’s true he played at the highest level in the state of Illinois (8A), the players still don’t compare physically to what he will see in the Big Ten, nor does the overall speed of the game. Whether or not he is the immediate future after Scheelhaase will depend on how well he adjusts to the differences in the two levels, and also whether he can outplay Reilly O’Toole for the right to be called the starting QB at Illinois.

One plus for Bailey, outside of his obvious athletic talent, is that all of the QB’s will be starting from square one with a new OC coming aboard for this upcoming season. So, from that perspective, O’Toole will not be a full season ahead of him in Cubit’s offensive system. All in all, if Bailey adjusts well during his freshman campaign I have a distinct feeling he will bypass O’Toole and become the future at the QB position for Illinois.

What do you think, Illini Nation? Is Aaron Bailey the future after Nathan Scheelhaase?

The Writing Illini staff includes lead editor Ricky Widmer along with staff writers, Austin Jabs and Ryan Kraemer.

Follow Ricky on Twitter @RickyWidmer.

Follow Austin on Twitter @AustinJabs85.

Follow Ryan on Twitter @RPKraemer.

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Tags: Aaron Bailey Football Illinois Fighting Illini Nathan Scheelhaase Reilly O'Toole

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