5 Illinois basketball top priority recruits after Will Riley commitment

There are plenty of big names out there for the Illinois basketball program, but there are five recruits who I have my eye on
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AJ Dybantsa - Class of 2025

Listen, let me dream. With so many resources being dumped into the Illinois basketball program and the coaching staff hitting its stride, maybe, just maybe, we can land a player like AJ Dybantsa.

Dybantsa is a 6-foot-9, 200-pound forward from Utah Prep in Utah. He is rated as a five-star recruit and ranked as the No. 1 player in the class of 2025. He is also the No. 1 small forward in the country and the best player coming out of Utah.

This is one of those recruits, much like Jasper Johnson, who Illinois wasn’t even close to being in the running for just months ago. That is when Brad Underwood hired Orlando Antigua as an assistant coach.

Antigua has strong connections with a lot of these big-time recruits because he was the assistant coach at Kentucky before John Calipari left for Arkansas. Those relationships transferred over to Illinois, where we are now in consideration for players who didn’t give us a look to begin the year.

There hasn’t been much from the Dybantsa camp in regard to his recruitment lately. Scholarship offers are still coming in, and there are rumblings that Illinois could be getting a visit sometime in the future. This wouldn’t shock me in the least bit.

If Dybansta does trim his list down to a top five or eight, Illinois might have a chance to be on that list. Can we close the deal? That is the million, or more, dollar question.