Terrance Taylor said he grew a lot as a player during his junior season.
"Coming into my junior year, I didn't use much of my hands," Taylor said. "I just bull-rushed. Now, I use a lot of my hands."
The Chicago Mt. Carmel junior outside linebacker/defensive end also literally grew. Taylor added 15 pounds of strength, which will make him an even more appealing prospect to power-five schools.
Illinois certainly has taken notice and hosted Taylor for an unofficial visit on Saturday.
"A lot of stuff sticks out about Illinois," Taylor said. "Probably just the football here. I love how the practice started out in Oklahoma drill. I think (Lovie and his staff) are awesome. The linebacker coach (Tim McGarigle) just left, but other than that, the same staff is still here. Coach (Luke) Butkus, he's the one who's telling me to get on my grades. It's great here."
The Illini took a liking to Taylor after his performance at their satellite camp in Chicago last June. They've kept in touch ever since.
"Right now, they just want me to get my grades up, and then they're talking about offering," Taylor said. "I got my grades up to a 3.0. Hopefully, it'll be time for that offer to come."
Taylor currently is an outside linebacker but may have the length, burst and frame to develop into an edge rusher as well, though he said he's most comfortable as an outside linebacker.
Taylor currently holds offers from Central Michigan, Toledo and Eastern Michigan. He visited CMU and Indiana last month.
"My mom went (to Indiana), that's one thing," Tayor said. "The football field there, they had us do a lot of fun things there. It was pretty nice."
Taylor also plans to visit Iowa soon. He said he hopes to make a decision sooner rather than later.
"After that, it's starting back up and planning where to go," Taylor said. "Pretty much, I'm seeing what school is best for me because I'm thinking of committing real soon," Taylor said. "(I'm looking for) how the coaches interact with me, how the football team looks and how the atmosphere of the whole practice is."