Illinois football added another member to the family on Monday afternoon.
It was already a big day for the United States, as fireworks were set to fly when the sun officially went down. But the Illini didn’t have to wait for sunset to have some fireworks of their own.
On Monday, Kenari Wilcher decided to end his recruitment and pledge his commitment to Illinois. This was an addition to the program most expected after a Crystal Ball Prediction was submitted on Sunday in favor of the Orange and Blue.
Wilcher is a good pick-up for the Illini. He is a 6-foot-1, 175-pound athlete out of Moore Haven Junior-Senior High School and resides in Clewiston, Florida. He isn’t rated or ranked by 247Sports for the class of 2023 just yet, but the offers Wilcher has are pretty solid.
Illinois was able to beat out a few rising power-five programs for Wilcher’s commitment. Some of the bigger names on his offer list included Indiana, Kentucky, USF, and Western Kentucky. The Illini were able to win out in the end, though.
Kenari Wilcher will bolster the Illinois football secondary with his ability to play every position.
While 247Sports lists Wilcher as an athlete, it does look like he will join the Illinois football program as a defensive back. The great thing about Wilcher is the fact he played multiple defensive back positions in high school.
The vision Wilcher brings to the table is impressive. He is also a wide receiver at the high school level, so I think that helps with his play as a safety. He knows where the opposing wide receiver is heading, so then he can get in a better position to break up or intercept a pass.
If I had slot Wilcher into a position right now, I would say he would be best suited at safety. He could also be a dynamic nickel, but safety is where I think he would be the best version of himself.
I will say this, I think Illinois got an underrated player in Wilcher. I like his speed. I think he has great vision. I also believe his hands are solid. Look for Wilcher to make an impact on the Illini within the first couple of years.