Illinois Football National Signing Day

illinois Illinois head coach Bill Cubit and his staff signed 25 recruits on Wednesday’s National Signing Day, many of which will play on the defensive side of the ball. Three Illinois signees are enrolled in the Spring 2016 semester.

With the preseason coaching changes, there were a lot of questions with this year’s recruiting class. But Cubit found a way around that.

“How we sold this class really was on academics. We talked about this being one of the finest universities in the world,” Cubit said.


The 2016 Signees: 

Christion Abercrombie

Stars: 3

The 6-foot-2, 220-pound inside linebacker originally committed to Western Kentucky in November. However, the Atlanta-native received and accepted an offer from Illinois on Jan. 24.

Jake Hansen

Stars: 3

Hansen is a 6-foot-2, 220-pound inside linebacker who had received offers from eight schools in addition to Illinois, including Iowa State and Central Florida.

Evan Jones

Stars: 2

This 6-foot-2, 185-pound cornerback turned down offers from schools like Maryland, Purdue, Georgia and Louisville before committing to join the Illini squad.

James McCourt

Stars: 3

The 6-foot-1, 185-pound kicker chose Illinois over Air Force and Army.

Jake Cerny

Stars: 3

The 6-foot-5, 280 pound tight end was recruited by Illinois assistant coach Alex Golesh before he left for Iowa State. Cerny ranks 34th in the state of Michigan.

Izon Pulley

Stars: 3

The defensive end committed to Miami (Florida) in June. However, in November, the 6-foot-4, 250-pound pass rusher switched to Illinois.

Kurt Gavin

Stars: 3

The 6-foot-5, 260-pound offensive tackle ranks 30th overall in the state of Illinois and 94th for his position nationally.

Griffin Palmer

Stars: 2

The 6-foot-5, 220-pound tight end received interest from Iowa, Wisconsin and Iowa State before committing to the Illini in June.

Ayo Shogbonyo

Stars: 2

The 6-foot-1.5, 206-pound outside linebacker plans to major in computer engineering.

Eddy Fish

Stars: 3

The 6-foot-6, 294 pound offensive lineman competed in the national Semper Fidelis Bowl in January.

Dom Thieman

Stars: 3

The wide receiver joins high school teammate James McCourt on the list of Illini signees.

Zarrian Holcombe

Stars: 3

The 6-foot-5, 215 pound Texas-native is the 38th-ranked tight end in the nation.

Andrew Trainer

Stars: 3

The tight end ranks 65th in his position nationwide and 45th in Virginia.

Darta Lee

Stars: 3

The 6-foot-3, 294 guard was awarded first-team all-district at offensive tackle as a junior and ranks 84th in his position nationwide.

Kenyon Jackson

Stars: 3

The 5-foot-11, 298 pound Jackson ranks 13th overall in his home state of Arkansas and 74th in his position nationwide.

Harvey Clayton Jr.

Stars: 3

The defensive back chose Illinois over Louisville, Middle Tennessee State and Temple.

Brandon Jones 

Stars: 3

The 6-foot-5, 235-pound defensive end committed to the Illini in August.

Dele Harding

Stars: 3

The 6-foot-1, 232 pound linebacker is ranked 28th at his position nationwide. Harding received offers from Michigan and USC and originally committed to the Wolverines.

MJ McGriff

Stars: 2

The 5-foot-8, 175-pound wide receiver received 15 offers and joined Illinois on Jan. 30.

Stanley Green

Stars: 3

The 6-foot-1, 190-pound cornerback is the No. 48 player in the state of Illinois.

Tymir Oliver 

Stars: 3

The 6-foot-3, 265 pound defensive end ranks 30th in the state of Pennslyvania and turned down offers from Northwestern, Boston College and Pittsburg among others before joining Illinois.

Tre Nation 

Stars: 3

The 6-foot, 220-pound running back received 13 offers, including from Louisville and Cincinnati.

Ahmari Hayes 

Junior college transfer

The defensive back enrolled at Illinois for the spring semester.

He spent the last two seasons at College of San Mateo in California.

Eli Peters

Stars: 3

Peters enrolled at Illinois for the spring semester.

Trenard Davis

Stars: 3

The defensive back spent the fall at Parkland College. He is the cousin of Illini freshman Desmond Cain.