In a deep year for offensive lineman, one of the state's biggest has been picking up interest from Illinois recently. Daquan Sain, a 6'-7" 363 pound offensive tackle from Brooks High School in Chicago, Illinois, has been hearing from Michigan State for some time however.
"MSU has been after me since my sophomore year. They have a great program. Coach (Mark) Dantonio I think is one of the best coaches in the Big Ten and the entire country."
Illinois's interest in Sain is enhanced by his longstanding relationship with Illinois graduating senior tackle Jeff Allen.
"They just started showing interest about last week. I didn't know it was that serious, but they told me I was on their board for a long time."
"I actually haven't had a chance to talk to the new coaches yet. But my cousin-in-law is Jeff Allen, and I got a chance to talk to him about Illinois. He said they were a great program.
I'm from Illinois, so I've always been a fan of Illinois. The new coach that came from Toledo is building a great program, and I think he's got a good recruiting class coming up. He might have started late, but he got some really good kids."
"I talk to a lot of recruits from Chicago. I'm friends with Logan Tillman and Ethan Pocic. They both say Illinois is a really good school too."
In addition to Illinois and Michigan State, Sain is hearing from a number of schools both in the Midwest and one in the Southeast.
"Auburn is showing some serious interest, Minnesota is close to offering. Wisconsin is showing interest, and I might head to their junior day this weekend. University of Michigan and Georgia Tech too."
Sain is a behemoth of an athlete. The size is there to be a force if Sain puts in the work. He may still have more room to grow taller.
"I'm 6'-7", 363. I haven't stopped growing yet, though. I'll probably hit 6'8" since I grew an inch from this time last year. By the time I graduate, I want to be down to 340 or 335."
"I play left tackle in high school. Every school that's recruiting me wants me at left tackle, and I think it's my best position. Right now, I'm working on mainly conditioning and strength."
Sain has mostly been focusing on the fundamentals when not working on conditioning.
"I have really good hands and good feet for my size. My stance, my position, and my footwork have been what I've been focused on lately."
Brooks isn't traditionally a pipeline of Division 1 recruits, but Sain says there are a number of talented players at his school.
"It's really awesome because the thing about our school is, there's a lot of unknown talent. There are a lot of good recruits at Brooks that just don't get noticed. I think when people come see me, they'll see my teammates too. It's been a fun experience to get to know a lot of these coaches and everything."
With one more year left to prove himself and get ready for college, not only will he be expanding his skill set, he'll be expanding his role on the field.
"The number one thing I want is to become a better leader and a better captain for my team. I want to be the best player and be the best asset to my team I can be. This year I'll be playing d-tackle as well, and even a little fullback."