The Illinois football team added another member to the family on Saturday afternoon.
James Frenchie announced on Twitter, in what was a pretty cool video, that he has decided to commit the University of Illinois. He ended up picking the Illini over Tennessee, Purdue, Louisville and Missouri. This is a huge commitment for the Orange and Blue.
Frenchie is a 5-foot-9, 175-pound wide receiver from Trinity Catholic High School in St. Louis, Missouri. He is rated as a four-star recruit who is the No. 290 player in the class of 2020 and the No. 51 wide receiver in the nation. He is also the No. 5 player in the state of Missouri.
Honestly, Frenchie’s recruitment has been extremely quiet. There wasn’t a lot of visiting activity in the last half a year or so, so it was extremely difficult to figure out where he was going to end up playing his college football. But the Illini always seemed to be right there for this kid, especially after his visit back on July 26.
Frenchie brings a lot of speed and talent to the Illinois wide receiver position. I figure he is more suited for the slot, but he is the type of player offensive coordinator, Rod Smith, can use in many different roles. That is what makes Frenchie so special.
Illinois needed to start replenishing the wide receiver spot as well. Ricky Smalling, Trevon Sidney, Dominic Stampley, Josh Imatorbhebhe, Caleb Reams and Trenard Davis will all be gone either after this season or after the 2020 campaign. That leaves a massive hole in the wide receiver corps. Frenchie will now help fill that hole.
The solid pipeline to the St. Louis area continues to get stronger as well. Frenchie now joins his former quarterback, Isaiah Williams, on the Illinois roster. In addition to Williams, Illinois also has Nick Walker, Shammond Cooper, Josh Plohr, and Moses Okpala from the St. Louis area. This connection is going to pay huge dividends.
Illinois has improved for the future this weekend. We were able to get a great safety transfer in Derrick Smith, and now we can add to the offense with Frenchie at wide receiver. The future is bright.