Julian Hylton was the sixth player to sign his National Letter of Intent to play for the Illinois Fighting Illini in the Class of 2014. I had a chance to catch up with Hylton recently, and rather than asking him a question he just came right out and said what he was feeling when he said, “I’m excited to start a new chapter in my life as a Fighting Illini. I am looking forward to working with the great coaching staff that will prepare us for the 2014 season and our college careers.”
Indeed, it didn’t take him long to get his NLI in this morning and officially become part of the Illini family.
— Illinois Football (@IlliniFootball) February 5, 2014
Hylton is rated as a 3 star recruit by 247Sports, ESPN, and Rivals, and he is rated a 2 star recruit by Scout.
As a Senior at Lincoln-Way North, Hylton rushed for 2,522 yards on 349 carries, and 84 yards on 5 receptions. He finished the year with 32 rushing touchdowns, and 1 receiving touchdown. It should also be noted that he only lost 1 fumble in 354 total touches. Ball security is always important, and Hylton looks like he understands that already. Should he eventually find himself on the offensive side of the ball, he appears more than capable of handling himself with his mix of size and speed.
Here’s what ESPN had to say about Hylton:
“Hylton is athletic enough to play a variety of positions and play them well. He could easily be a very effective corner or running back at a relatively high level.”
Illinois’ twitter account and highlight package indicate his first look will be on the defensive side of the ball, and with his combination of size and athleticism he should work out very well as a defensive back. Take a minute to check out the highlight package put together by IP:
Welcome aboard, Julian Hylton! We look forward to watching you grow, and improve, as a player over the next four years in the Illini uniform.
You can follow Ryan on Twitter @RPKraemer.