Illinois’ wide receivers coach Andrew Hayes-Stoker has used his Texan roots to get the Illini much more involved in the fertile recruiting grounds of his home state.
Illinois just offered Jarek Broussard, a receiver out of Dallas. Hayes-Stoker has been the lead recruiter for the Class of 2018 prospect.
“Me and Coach Stoker have been talking for a couple weeks now so it was finally nice to meet. He’s a real funny guy,” Broussard said. “He’s so cool. He cracks jokes and he knows all the modern day lingo like ‘dabbing’ and all that. It’s awesome.”
Broussard is a speedy slot receiver that accumulated 2,478 all-purpose yards and finished with 23 touchdowns as he helped Bishop Lynch win the state title. He was also used effectively as a running back, while electrifying the crowds with impressive punt and kickoff returns.
Lovie Smith’s NFL ties make Illinois an intriguing option for Broussard, plus the Big Ten is a conference that he likes.
“(Lovie Smith’s) NFL experience would prepare me. He would know exactly what to teach me so that I can play at that next level,” Broussard said. “I feel like the best conferences for me are either the Big Ten or the Pac-12. I’m not one of those big and tall guys. I’m a shorter guy with great speed so I think I’d prefer the Big Ten or the Pac-12.”
His size might be the one knock that some may have against him since he stands at only 5-foot-9 and weighs 170 pounds. But you can’t teach speed which is what Broussard definitely has. His 40-yard dash was clocked at 4.47 seconds.
"I’m trying to put on weight,” Broussard said. “I want to be able to run with that weight and make the cuts I make now with the weight that I’ll put on my body.”
TCU could be Illinois’ biggest competition for Broussard while Houston, Colorado, Tulane, Arkansas State, and Colorado State have also given him offers. He hopes to make a decision in August before his senior season.
“Being far from home isn’t much of a concern for me,” Broussard said. “My biggest concern is just wherever I go, I want the opportunity to get the ball.”
Broussard implied that Illinois would give him every chance to be on the field early and often as a true freshman.