Illinois Basketball: Illini seeing the potential in rising star Chris Riddle

Illinois basketball turned their heads toward the future on Monday afternoon with a scholarship offer to a local product.

Winning the state of Illinois is something Brad Underwood has done at a fairly successful rate. Some of the top recruits in the state have come to Champaign to play basketball. But I would like to have even more success bringing in local kids. That is why I am excited about the offer to Chris Riddle.

Riddle is a 6-foot-5, 205-pound guard from Kenwood High School and resides in Chicago, Illinois. He isn’t rated or ranked just yet because full rankings aren’t out for 2024, but Riddle is starting to pick up some recruiting attention.

Western Illinois was the first DI program to come in with a scholarship offer back in May. Illinois wasn’t too far behind, as they are the second DI team to see Riddle as an asset in the future. Riddle just finished up his freshman season, so over the next few years, he is bound to pick up a plethora of big-time offers from across the country.

Getting in early on Riddle is a smart move by the Illinois basketball program.

If you watch what Riddle does on the basketball court and you see how this kid is built, you would think he is a senior entering the college ranks as of today. I honestly believe he could hold his own as a solid bench role player for the Illini right now.

I know, that kind of sounds crazy, but Riddle checks all of the boxes in a player I want playing for the Orange and Blue. I will start with his size at roughly 6-foot-5. He is a guard who is turning into a wing. I imagine, by the end of his high school career, he will be a dominating forward somewhere around 6-foot-7 or 6-foot-8.

From the outside, Riddle has a solid shot. He can hit three-pointers at a decent rate, which makes him extremely dangerous. He is also able to drive the ball well and finish at the hoop. His body enables him to hold off defenders while scoring.

But Riddle isn’t just a look at me one-man show either. He is someone who brings a ton of energy to the court and gets his teammates involved in the game. You can tell he is a ride-or-die player with his teammates. I love everything about Riddle’s game.

This is a great offer by the Illini. Getting Riddle in the doors at the State Farm Center is going to end up being a challenge, though. Every team in the country is going to be after this kid. Hopefully, an early relationship will hold strong as Illinois adds a great forward to their roster in Riddle.