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4-star guard Jeremiah Fears commits to Illinois

Underwood starts off the 2025 class with a bang.

Chris Day/The Commercial Appeal / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Illini’s 2025 class is off to a booming start.

Four-star guard Jeremiah Fears announced his commitment to Illinois on Monday, choosing the Illini over Providence, Michigan, Kansas and Ole Miss among a multitude of other high major offers.

Despite currently playing for the prestigious Arizona Compass Prep, Fears is an in-state product from Joliet who spent his freshman and sophomore seasons at Joliet West High School. The 6-foot-3, 175-pound guard is listed as a Top-35 player nationally according to 247 Sports’ composite rankings.

Fears is a pure bucket-getter and explosive with the ball in his hands. He can create shots for himself off the bounce and is a dangerous shot-maker with a strong pull-up game as well as an ability to break down defenders and attack the rim. It remains to be seen if he’ll ultimately end up as a true point guard or play more off the ball at the college level, but his playmaking ability has improved throughout his high school career.

After reeling in a top-25 recruiting class for 2024 — it includes Morez Johnson, Jason Jakstys and Jase Butler — Brad Underwood and his staff now have an immediate headliner to begin their 2025 haul in Fears who will represent his home state program.

The Illini’s relationship with Fears stems back to their recruitment of his older brother Jeremy, with whom they were a finalist before he ultimately chose to join Michigan State. Assistant coach Geoff Alexander has been the lead recruiter in securing Fears.