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Illinois lands commitment from Wofford transfer Blake Jeresaty

The interior lineman was an FCS All-American last season.

The Illini picked up much-needed offensive line help on Saturday afternoon when former Wofford Terrier Blake Jeresaty announced his commitment to Lovie Smith’s program.

Jeresaty started 29 games under center in his time with the Terriers en route to All-Southern Conference First Team and FCS AP All-American First Team selections this past season. He was also the recipient of the Jacobs Blocking Trophy given to the best offensive lineman in the Southern Conference. The 6-foot-1, 290-pound Jeresaty also played a large part in an offensive line that ranked first nationally in fewest sacks allowed and the second best rushing attack.

It’s hard to imagine Jeresaty unseats Doug Kramer as the starting center, so the better fit may be at right guard, where Richie Petitbon played 13 games as a grad transfer in 2019. Illinois returns three other starters along the o-line — Vederian Lowe (left tackle), Kendrick Green (left guard), and Alex Palczewski (right tackle).

Linemen have been a major point of emphasis on the recruiting trail recently. Incoming freshmen Kevin Tyler, Phifer Griffin & Blaise Sparks will be joining Lovie Smith’s squad in 2020, as well.

Jeresaty is the Illini’s second transfer in three days. Former New Mexico State receiver Drew Dan committed to the program on Thursday.