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East St. Louis Again Looks Strong

East St. Louis is going to an exciting squad to watch this upcoming season.  They had a quality campaign last year under first year Head Coach Tony Young, a former DI college assistant.  Young’s team was guided by class of 2013 recruit Deshawn Munson who was one of the most productive players in the state last year.

Their senior leadership this season will come from 6’4” Darrion Beane who is an athletic wing that plays with energy and can get to the basket.  Senior point guard Justin Smith will bring toughness as well as his ability to run the team and make shots.

This season the Flyers will be loaded with young talent in the freshman and sophomore classes.  That is headlined by the state’s top 2017 prospect 6’10” Jeremiah Tilmon.  The post proved during the summer with MoKan Elite 14U he is a premier young prospect with his ability to run the floor, score around the basket, rebound, and swat shots.  He has interest already from high major colleges across the Midwest.

East St. Louis will open up the season at the Decatur Turkey Tournament against a stacked field.

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Leron Black Talks Illini Commitment

 The Illini landed a top 50 prospect nationally that fits their system perfectly.  Illinois has pursued Memphis White Station (TN) power forward Leron Black ever since the moment he decommitted from Baylor.  It paid off with a commitment from the four-star on Sunday.

Black is a 6’7” four man that brings a ton of energy and a high activity level around the basket.  He excels at hitting the offensive glass and attacking from the high post.

We caught up with the newest Illini commitment to see why they were his choice.

“I feel like I will grow as a person, player, and spiritually.  I trust and love the coaching staff.  The campus is amazing.  I prayed about it.  And I know it is in God’s will.  To God be the glory.”

How did the commitment go down Sunday?

“I text Coach Groce and told him I wanted to do it.  We waited for them to come pick me and the family up for breakfast.  That’s when we made it public.”

Although he says the visit was great, he already knew before he stepped foot in Champaign what he was going to do.

“I knew before the visit I was going to commit.”

Head Coach John Groce as well as assistants Jamall Walker, Dustin Ford, and Paris Parham did a tremendous job building a relationship with the talented forward and his family.

“We are really close.  I felt like family before I even committed.  I trust and love them all.”

Black discussed his fit in Illinois’ offense.

“We are a running team.  That’s the style of play I love and play my best at.”

This is the Illini’s second commitment in the class of 2014 along with Champaign Centennial power forward Michael Finke.






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Josh Meier Talks Chicago State Verbal


Richards 2014 power forward Josh Meier is an athletic post that is quick off the floor as a leaper.  He is a solid rebounder and finishes around the basket with explosion.  He can knock down a face up jumper, but his go to move is a baseline spin on the block.

Meier made it official on Thursday and committed to Chicago State.  The senior spoke with us about why they were his choice.

“I just feel like it is the best fit for me to show what I can do on the college level.  I also liked the coaches a lot and the direction they are trying to take the program.  The move to the WAC was a big part of my decision too.”

He has built a tight relationship with the staff at Chicago State.

“They are the type of coaches I’m comfortable with.  A lot of Chicago guys.  Coach Dildy and Coach Pryor were both really good players themselves so they have achieved a lot of what I want to achieve as a player.”

How will he fit in their system?

“Perfect fit for me.  They play a lot like my high school team.”

Meier ran on the circuit with IBA Select this past spring and summer.


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Tai Odiase Talks UIC Commitment





Homewood Flossmoor 2014 power forward Tai Odiase continued to see his stock rise over the last year.  With that he has collected a nice group of offers.

The plan was to pick one of those schools on this birthday.  He changed his mind during his official visit to UIC.

"I officially committed to UIC today."

Why were the Flames his choice?

"I just love the coaching staff.  They were the first school to ever recruit me and they were recruiting me the hardest.  I feel real comfortable with them and the plan they have for me over the next four years."

How will he fit in their system?

"They play high-tempo basketball and I love to run the floor so I think I would fit perfectly in their system."

Odiase is a long and angular power forward that runs the floor great, finishes efficiently around the hoop, and protects the rim on defense.  The senior played against the best competition in the country on the Nike EYBL circuit with Meanstreets during the spring and summer.







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Tai Odiase Trims List, Sets Date

Homewood Flossmoor 2014 power forward Tai Odiase saw his stock rise in the spring and summer with his play for Meanstreets 17U.  The athletic and angular-bodied forward is a defensive presence that blocks shots and rebounds.  Offensively he runs the floor great and finishes well around the basket.

Odiase is one of the top power forwards in the state’s class of 2014.  He tells us he will be making his college announcement on his birthday September 21.  He has narrowed his list of schools to Valparaiso, UIC, UMKC, Ball State, IPFW, and Kent State.

Odiase will take an official visit to UIC this upcoming weekend.  He has previously visited all of the other schools unofficially other than Kent State.  No other visits are scheduled at this time.

Colleges that will be coming to visit him during September at his high school will be Valparaiso, UMKC, Ball State, and IPFW.  Kent State will do an in-home visit September 16.

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