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Three-star DE Olalere Oladipo sets decision date

Good morning! Welcome to the Orange Minute for Wednesday, August 17.

The top remaining Illinois football recruiting target has set a decision date. Three-star defensive end Olalere Oladipo informed the Northwest Herald on Tuesday that he plans to select a college on August 25. Per 247Sports, Oladipo is the No. 776 overall player in the country.

Officially, Oladipo is still considering a group of six schools. However, he recently alluded that the list has been narrowed down even further to three unidentified finalists (likely Illinois, Penn State, and Indiana). The Orange and Blue appear to be in great shape, too, as Oladipo has taken several unofficial visits to Champaign since March. It’ll be a big boost to the defensive line if Lovie Smith can manage to land the Huntley product, as that position group is the biggest area of need for the 2017 recruiting class.

Scouting Report (via TCR)

Oladipo is very aggressive and nasty on the gridiron; he's a big hitter that seems to relish contact, and he goes 100% until the whistle is blown. Oladipo has so far shown equal ability against the pass and run, although he'll need to work on his hand placement and technique to shed blockers more efficiently.

Overall, the 6-foot-3 lineman has excellent speed, quickness, burst, strength, and power. He may be able to play both WDE and SDE at the next level. Oladipo seems to play with a joy and energy that should be contagious with teammates on the field

Olalere Oladipo Highlights (Junior Season)

Additionally, Illini Inquirer’s Jeremy Werner also tweeted that four-star wide receiver Carmoni Green (FL) will be making his decision on the same date So keep an eye out on social media next Thursday -- it could end up being a huge day for the program.

Illinois Fighting Illini Links

- Former Illini RB Daniel Dufrene passes away at 29 (TCR)

Dufrene was a member of Illinois’ 2007 Rose Bowl team, and he ran for 1,234 yards during his career (2007-09). His biggest game came in the upset of No. 1 Ohio State, when he rushed for 106 yards, including an 80-yard spring on the team’s second play.

- Illinois commit Jeremiah Tilmon transferring back to East St. Louis (TCR)

Tilmon was at La Lumiere Prep (IN) last season, and he helped lead the Lakers to an appearance in the 2016 DICK’S Sporting Goods National title game. He averaged 13.2 points and 8.2 rebounds per game during the regular season.

- Excitement building for Illinois football as season nears (JG-TC)

"When the students get into town this week, that adds even more excitement," the Illini head football coach said Tuesday after practice. "Team-wise, yes, it’s getting close and the guys can’t wait."

- Illini Volleyball ready to move past Sweet Sixteen (The News-Gazette)

"Sixteen, the number, I’m really considering getting rid of it on our jerseys," Hambly said Tuesday with enough conviction it might not have been in jest. "[McKenna Kelsay] has it now, and she’s a senior. She’s leaving. It may go away."