Lovie Smith and the Fighting Illini coaching staff have been coming up short in their pursuit of tight ends targets, but their luck finally changed on Saturday morning. During an official visit to Champaign, three-star prospect Louis Dorsey (FL) announced a verbal commitment to Illinois, picking the program over the likes of Baylor, Indiana, and Central Florida.
According to 247Sports, Dorsey is rated as the No. 1473 overall recruit in the class-of-2017. Big Power 5 schools such as Florida State, LSU, and Miami (FL) had offered scholarships to the Florida native as a sophomore, however their interest ultimately wained; Illini Inquirer’s Jeremey Werner suspects that it’s because Dorsey continued to focus on playing basketball at the time.
Illinois’ combined group of 19 recruits will rank No. 44 nationally and No. 10 in the Big Ten once 247Sports reflects Dorsey’s announcement. Scout has a more optimistic outlook on the current group, rating them at No. 33 and No. 8, respectively. The Orange and Blue still have six available scholarships to fill before National Signing Day, but this long-needed addition of a tight end should take at least some pressure off the staff.