Chicago QB Quincy Patterson has 'wonderful' visit to Illini

Chicago Solorio quarterback Quincy Patterson took in Illini football atmosphere during unofficial visit. Where do the Illini stand for their top 2018 quarterback priority?

Chicago Solorio junior quarterback Quincy Patterson has heard all the Juice Williams comparisons. But when the 2018 prospect actually had the chance to meet the former Illinois quarterback on Saturday during an unofficial visit to Champaign, he froze.

“I got scared,” Patterson said. “I got nervous.”

Illinois just hopes Patterson follows Williams’ lead in picking a school. The Illini want the strong-armed, big-bodied, athletic dual-threat quarterback to help revitalize Illini football, like Williams (a fellow Chicagoan) did -- at least briefly -- last decade. So they were happy to get him on campus for Saturday’s sell-out crowd against North Carolina.

“It was wonderful,” Patterson said. “I have always liked the school. I’ve been on a visit there before, but this one felt different for some reason. I don’t know if it was atmosphere, but they moved way up my list.”

Patterson, who camped with Illinois in June, also had time to hang out with other recruits, including several 2017 Illini commits. “Pretty much anybody you could think, I hung out with them,” Patterson said. “I was with Cam (Thomas), Ricky (Smalling), Kendall Smith and (Olalere) Oladipo.. Ricky was being Ricky, of course. He’s goofy. Ricky is always like that. He’s just saying by the time I get there things are going to be very different. He said by that time, it’ll actually be a football school and the whole culture of football at Illinois will be different.”

Patterson took visits to four other Big Ten campuses for summer camps: Iowa, Purdue, Indiana and Penn State. He said those experiences have helped him during Solorio's 2-1 start to the season.

"Since the first game, I noticed that with my passing I’m one thousand times more comfortable," Patterson said. "I get better at passing and more comfortable. I felt like just going to the camps in general and being more confident just transfers to my game on the field. It wasn’t that I didn’t have it, I was just sacred. The camps and recruiting just boosted my confidence."

As for recruiting, two Big Ten programs are on him the most.

“It’d probably be U of I and Penn State that I have the most contact," Patterson said. "I get tons of mail from Penn State. They want a dual-threat quarterback with the offense they run.”

Illinois, meanwhile, is hoping he’s not scared to meet Juice Williams’ line of thinking and become the next Chicago quarterback to be a program-changing recruit in a program-changing class.

“That means a lot considering I’m from Illinois and if I did go to U of I, my stamp would kind of be on Illinois,” Patterson said. “That group of people (in the Class of 2018) would never be forgotten.”


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