Kentucky Country Day 2018 tight end Josh Lifson was one of multiple recruits that the Illini entertained at their open practice last Saturday.
“I really liked it. Being able to visit a Big Ten school was really cool,” Lifson told Illini Inquirer. “They are a really good academic school and I had a good feel about it. I liked watching practice and I like the offense that they run. They use the tight end a lot and it’s a big part of their offense. You’ll never see them without a tight end on the field so that’s intriguing.”
It was the first time that Lifson has met with Illinois’ coaching staff. Head coach Lovie Smith has yet to extend a scholarship offer to him, but the long and lanky tight end is hopeful the offer will come soon.
“They said I’m in the mix and that they’re pretty interested,” Lifson said. “They like to give out offers a little later like in the summer and towards beginning of senior year, but I’m going to out-work everyone and keep the communication between me and Illinois open.”
Illinois tight ends coach Bob Ligashesky spent some time with Lifson as did former Illini quarterback and current offensive analyst Nathan Scheelhaase, who lived in Louisville for a year after his 2013 graduation.
“After practice, I got talked to Coach Ligs (Ligashesky) for awhile and Coach Nate (Scheelhaase), which was really nice,” Lifson said. “I also got to see the walk-throughs, and then I went on a bus tour with the graduate assistants who showed me around campus before I headed home.”
Lifson currently possesses four scholarship offers from Morehead State, Tennessee Tech, Wofford, and Tennessee Chattanooga. Illinois is joined by Wake Forest, Duke, Western Kentucky, and Louisville as schools that have interest in him, and the Illini are near the top of his list.
“Illinois is definitely up there,” he said. “I plan to go visit Western Kentucky and Duke in April, but I can’t wait to come back here for camp and see them (Illinois) again.”