I don't think there are many Illini fans out there who think Illinois has a realistic shot with Whitney Young's Jahlil Okafor -- even if John Groce has a secret weapon while recruiting him -- but maybe some will begin to surface now.
On Wednesday Okafor released his top eight on Twitter and Illinois made the list.
In no particular order: My final 8 ArizonaBaylorDukeIllinoisKentuckyKansasMichigan stateOhio state— Jahlil Okafor (@jahprobound) May 29, 2013
Now, before you go getting super-excited by all this, it's important to remember that five of those schools have had in-home visits with Okafor in recent months, and the Illini weren't one of those five teams. So while it's nice to see Illinois mentioned in Okafor's top eight, especially alongside some of those schools, I wouldn't consider this to be anything more than a show of respect to Okafor's state school.
Though I wouldn't mind being wrong in this case. I mean, both Cliff Alexander and Okafor have talked about going to college together. Might as well do it in Champaign!