Bret Bielema has been making Illinois a priority over his first six months with the Illini, and he may have made his biggest in-state splash yet on Wednesday.
Three-star running back Aidan Laughery committed to Illinois in a well-attended showing at a park. The Gibson City star’s announcement was also broadcast on WCIA News 3.
A 5-foot-11, 185-pound senior, Laughery chose the Illini over several other Power Five schools, including Minnesota, Rutgers and Michigan State. He visited Illinois in June.
Laughery is the No. 18 player in the class of 2022, according to 247 Sports.
Illinois has 14 commitments in next year’s class, which is Bielema’s first full year on the job. Eight of those players call the Land of Lincoln home — a big change from the old guy.