Under the leadership of head coach Bill Cubit, the Illinois football program looks to transition to an athletic, versatile group of players committed toward pushing the Fighting Illini forward. As things stand, Illinois has managed to form the No. 11 recruiting class in a competitive Big Ten conference, good enough for No. 60 nationally. Illinois only has 18 commits, however, so it looks as if the class will expand in the weeks leading up to National Signing Day.
Pushing that athletic mindset forward, Cubit will hope to hold onto committed prospects such as defensive back Stanley Green Jr. As an Illinois-native, Green could accomplish several necessary tasks at the next level. First, Green’s instincts with the ball in the air make him a natural in the secondary. Apart from that, Green flashes numerous instances of big-play ability on his Hudl highlight tape. Even further, Green took snaps on offense, displaying his quick acceleration and change of direction.
With these qualities packed into Green’s 6’1″, 190-pound frame, the Fighting Illini currently have a diamond in the rough. According to Green, he sees himself as a tough, competitive player.
“I would say that when I’m on the field, whoever is in my way is going down pretty hard,” Green told Today’s U. “I’m a free safety, so I really like a defense that can move me around. ”
Due to the staff shakeup occurring after the 2015 season, Green has not had a chance to see how the Illinois defense looks to move him around in college.
“They just got a new defensive coordinator and a new defensive-back coach,” Green said. “So I haven’t talked to him yet. I’m not sure.”
With offers from Iowa State and Illinois to his name, Green says he opted to pledge to Illinois after a telling official visit to Champaign.
“After I took my official to Illinois, I just felt like it was a great family place,” Green said. “Everybody around me felt like they were there for me and there’s a lot of support on the campus and all the students was like family.”
According to 247Sports.com, Green is listed as a three-star cornerback, although the East St. Louis (Ill.) product intends to play safety in college. Green also hopes to continue playing with one of his current teammates once he arrives at Illinois.
“I really want to add another dude who was on the official with me,” Green said. “He’s uncommitted right now, and he took his official with me. The one player who will take the Illini 2016 class to the next level is my guy, Tre’vour Simms.”
Simms is also listed as a three-star prospect by 247Sports.com, but the No. 80 offensive tackle boasts offers from Missouri, Illinois and Syracuse.
Simms is one of the players who has taken it upon himself to continue improving on his game during the offseason along with Green.
“Right now over this break, me and my friends have been at the weight room and up at the field every day trying to get better,” Green said. ”
This past season, Green and Simms experience a shortened five game regular season. Despite the limited amount of games, Green feels that he had a decent year.
“For the first five games, I had 53 tackles, 37 solos and three interceptions,” Green said. “So it was a pretty good five games.”
Look for Green to continue recruiting Simms to Illinois.