Home State School Important To Peorian

The Fighting Illini football team always benefits when there are high major players who reside downstate because they often have a strong interest in the state school. Many years few are available, but 2013 promises to be an exception. Logan Tuley-Tillman has tremendous potential as an offensive tackle, and he grew up a fan of Orange and Blue.

Logan Tuley-Tillman visited Illinois for the Ohio State game. He had a special interest in observing an Illini lineman who plays his left tackle position.

"I'm looking at the o-line. You have a real good tackle named Jeff Allen, and I watch everything he does. See if there's anything I can add to my game."

The Peoria Manual junior plays defensive line also, but he appears to be destined for offense at the college level. He has several attributes that make him an attractive prospect.

"Pass blocking, footwork, just reading what the defense is trying to do."

He has excellent foot quickness for a big man. Combine that with his rangy physique, and he is someone worth following as he matures.

"The last time I measured I was about 6'-7", and I weighed 271."

Of course, he is still a work in progress.

"I want to work on getting bigger and getting stronger in the weight room. I put on about 30 pounds in the summertime. I hope to do that again so I can be at about 305 before I get here and get a chance at playing."

Did we hear that right? Did he say "here," as in a future at the University of Illinois? Does he have a strong interest in the school?

"Most definitely. They're most definitely real high on my list right now. Ever since I was little, it's something I always wanted to do. The academics here is just off the chart."

After allowing that revelation to soak in a moment, questioning returned to his weight gain. Sometimes young players put on more fat than muscle when they gain weight rapidly. That does not appear to be the case for Tuley-Tillman.

"Actually, after putting on 30 pounds I feel way faster."

Peoria Manual is more known as a basketball school than football. How did his team do this season?

"We were kind of down this year. We've got a lot of players going both ways. It's real tough."

For its size, Peoria doesn't seem to produce its share of high major football prospects. Tuley-Tillman has a theory about that.

"I think it's just the lack of size up front. I'm trying to change that."

While Illinois may have a lead, Tuley-Tillman continues to enjoy the recruiting process. He has a number of suitors, and more are likely to follow.

"Illinois, Mizzou, Oklahoma State, Boise State and Michigan. I'm going to Ohio State for a Nike camp. I have an offer from Indiana."

When does he expect to make his college choice official?

"I hope to make my decision before the start of my senior year."

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