After losing out on guys like Jon Scheyer, Julian Wright and Sherron Collins over the past few years, there's been a recent turnaround. In 2009 they scored a class full of prospects within the state.
For 2010 they've already done the same, as they hold verbal commitments from Jereme Richmond, Crandall Head and Meyers Leonard. Now they've added their first 2011 kid to the mix -- Tracy Abrams.
"I want to start it off," Abrams told Scout.com. "I want to get the whole state coming to Illinois. I think it's a great situation.
"I think at Illinois we will have a chance to win a national championship," Abrams said. "They already have a few pieces to the puzzle with Jereme Richmond and Crandall Head. They just made me feel real welcome when I went down there."
The Chicago (Ill.) Mt. Carmel standout committed to the Fighting Illini Thursday afternoon. Second year Illinois assistant coach Jerrance Howard was the point man on Abrams' commitment.
"We got real cool when I went down there on the visit," Abrams said of Howard. "He's a real cool person and he keeps it real. I feel like I tell him things and he's cool with it. I feel like it's a family."
Abrams, a four-star recruit, said he also considered Tennessee and Indiana.