The top remaining Fighting Illini basketball recruiting target is officially off the board. On Sunday afternoon, five-star wing Kris Wilkes (IN) gave a verbal commitment to the UCLA Bruins, picking the program over Illinois and Indiana. The 6-foot-8 Indianapolis native is rated as the nation’s No. 18 overall prospect by 247Sports.
Glad to say I have committed to UCLA 〽️ ...— Kris Air Wilkes (@kadw31) November 13, 2016
While Illinois always seemed to be a distant third in this race, it’s pretty impressive that they were able to stick around this long. Wilkes took an official visit to Champaign in early September, and you have to figure that the coaching staff made quite an impression that weekend. But as we all should unfortunately know by now, recruiting only matters if you manage to sign players. So right now it certainly looks like Malcolm Hill’s 2017-18 replacement will indeed be D.J. Williams.
Illinois is currently awaiting another important decision on Monday, as three-star big man Mayan Kiir (FL) is expected to make an announcement sometime in the afternoon. The 6-foot-9 prospect is also considering Louisville, VCU, LSU, and N.C. State.