Ohio Defensive End Selects Illinois

The Fighting Illini football team continued its recruiting momentum Tuesday with the commitment of defensive end D.J. Smoot to the Illini. The Ohio product impressed in a recent UI summer camp and was offered a scholarship at that time. He is the 14th known commitment for new coach Tim Beckman and his staff.

Groveport Madison High School defensive end D.J. Smoot chose Illinois today. He explains his reasons.

"I've been talking with them long before they offered me. I looked at the campus, and everything's new. I liked the atmosphere of the college town. It's Big 10, so that's good. Everything about it is a thrill for me. That's the place I want to be."

The 6'-3", 228 pounder ran a 4.71 forty for the Illini at their Barrington one-day camp June 12th. And he showed good speed and agility off the edge. Illini coach Tim Beckman shared his thoughts with Smoot on his commitment.

"He was real happy about it. He said we have seven recruits coming in from Ohio. He said I would see the other recruits around other camps and things, so get to know them. Then by the time we come in for camp we're already gonna have great chemistry. So get out there and get a ring."

Did he go to other camps besides the Illini?

"I went to a bunch of camps, but after Illinois, I knew what I wanted."

He chose the Illini over Toledo and Indiana.

"Toledo were the first people to actually offer me, so that's why they were up there."

Smoot is the 14th known commitment for the 2013 signing class.

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