QB Streak

First Aaron Bailey and now Wes Lunt -- Tim Beckman is reeling in top quarterbacks.

For Tim Beckman and his staff, securing the transfer of Wes Lunt is a big, big victory.

It's as big a football victory as a coach can have in the middle of June.

Moan or make fun of Beckman's on-the-field performances all you want – there's plenty of material to work with if that's what you're into.

But credit him, too, for making the most of his situation by recruiting at a much higher level than he probably should be.

While the in-state misses have been numerous, Beckman has now secured the top quarterback from the state of Illinois in the last two classes. Lunt was the No. 21 signal caller in the class of 2012, winning the starting role at Oklahoma State after enrolling early.

The first-ever true freshman to start at quarterback in Cowboys history, Lunt threw for 1,108 yards, six touchdowns and seven interceptions in five games.

He'll join a quarterback room that includes Aaron Bailey, considered the best in Illinois at his position in the most recent recruiting cycle, the eighth-best in the country.

Obviously gifted athletically, I contend the best part about Lunt and Bailey is that they both come from prestigious and winning backgrounds.

Lunt guided Rochester High to back-to-back state championships while setting numerous passing records. While Lunt was doing his thing at the 3A level, Bailey, just a junior at the time, was busy leading Bolingbrook High to the 8A state title in 2011.

After the Illini's 2-10 record in Beckman's first season, guys like Lunt and Bailey are exactly what his program needs. They're both great players. They're both winners. They've got faces that others around the state will recognize, names that people associate good things with.

I'm not sure how Beckman, with his defensive background, is selling his product to these highly successful quarterbacks, but his pitch is clearly working.

And don't be that drag of a person that quickly points out Beckman had little to do with landing either signal caller. Circumstances did help out, with Lunt leaving Oklahoma State after relations with the staff faltered and Bailey choosing to play for the home state school, seemingly without paying mind to prior results or caring who was on staff.

But there's no such thing as luck in recruiting. There's only hard work, players you get and players you don't get.

Lunt won't help Beckman this season. He has to sit out due to transfer rules. And it's not yet clear how much of a factor Bailey will be, a true freshman who will undoubtedly get as much playing time as he proves he's ready for.

Instead, it will be senior Nathan Scheelhaase's job to help push Beckman back into better standing.

If the coach survives this season, the future doesn't look as dim. At least not at quarterback.


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