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Illinois Basketball's sustained loyalty played a big role in Jeremiah Tilmon's decision

Good morning. Welcome to the Orange Minute for Tuesday, July 12.

Mike Granse-USA TODAY Sports

Hey -- Jeremiah Tilmon committed to Illinois basketball yesterday. Illini Inquirer's Derek Piper was in La Porte, IN on Monday for an interview with the newest member of the Fighting Illini, and it's definitely something you should check out if you haven't already. The impact of his decision has been dissected ad nauseam, but the big man himself had some really interesting things to say about the entire process.

Tilmon cited Illinois' sustained loyalty over the years as one of the principal factors in his decision. He stated, "I feel like [Illinois is] where my heart is telling me to go. Ever since eighth grade, Illinois has been looking at me and believing in me. They've been there since Day One." The five-star prospect went on to discuss a lot more (i.e. his plans to recruit Jordan Goodwin) so, again, make sure to read Piper's work if you haven't already.

Today's poll question: Will Jeremiah Tilmon eventually make it to the NBA? Make sure to cast your vote, and let us know what you think down in the comments.

Jeremiah Tilmon Illinois Fighting Illini Links

What's next for Illini Basketball recruiting? (TCR)

John Groce still has three open scholarships for the 2017 recruiting class. What's next? Probably another big man, and definitely some more perimeter players. Here are five names to remember ahead of the early signing period.

With Tilmon's commitment, John Groce's real test begins (TCR)

For years, Illinois fans have longed to see just that one blue chip recruit, that one, single, five-star domino fall to turn Illinois into a top-10 national program again. And a top-10 program one five-star recruit does not create. It's time to turn the focus to basketball.

Da'Monte Williams: I'm extremely happy for Tilmon (The News-Gazette)

Tilmon's commitment makes him the third member of Illinois' 2017 class, joining Belleville East wing Javon Pickett and Illini legacy and Peoria Manual combo guard Da'Monte Williams. Both were excited with the newest addition to the class.

Jeremiah Tilmon is already recruiting Jordan Goodwin (TCR)

The Orange and Blue still have three available scholarships for their 2017 recruiting class, which already ranks No. 2 in the nation behind UCLA. Tilmon is evidently very aware of this fact, and he's already recruiting four-star wing Jordan Goodwin to join him in Champaign.

Illini DE Dawuane Smoot has Lovie Smith's endorsement (Pantagraph)

"I'm chasing records, honestly," Smoot said matter-of-factly. "I think 16 [sacks; a program record] is very realistic," especially on a defense run by Smith and coordinator Hardy Nickerson, who have a special affection for pass-rushers.