Preps Talk

Illinois commit Jeremiah Tilmon transfers back to East St. Louis

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Illinois commit Jeremiah Tilmon transfers back to East St. Louis

The Mr. Basketball race in Illinois just got really interesting. 

Illinois commit and five-star center Jeremiah Tilmon confirmed on Tuesday that he is transferring back to East St. Louis from powerhouse prep school La Lumiere for his senior season.

After spending his junior season at the LaPorte, Indiana-based prep school, the 6-foot-10, 235-pound Tilmon figures to be a major factor for the Flyers this year as he'll enter the IHSA season as the No. 1 big man in the state.

As a sophomore at East St. Louis, Tilmon averaged 11.3 points and 6.9 rebounds per game before making the move to La Lumiere last fall to improve his academics while facing tougher competition. During his lone season at La Lumiere, Tilmon started on one of the best teams in the country as the Lakers made it the DICK's Sporting Goods Nationals title game before losing to Oak Hill Academy. 

In that national title game in early April, Tilmon suffered a dislocated left shoulder that caused him to have surgery in late May. The injury and subsequent recovery forced Tilmon out of this spring and summer on the grassroots circuit. Tilmon averaged 13.2 points and 8.2 rebounds per game at La Lumiere last season.

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Regarded as the No. 24 overall prospect in the Rivals Class of 2017 national rankings, Tilmon is the most important Illinois commit in the John Groce era and one of the best in-state prospects to enter the program in years. Tilmon picked Illinois over Kansas and North Carolina in July as he's part of an in-state, three-man recruiting class that includes Peoria Manual guard DaMonte Williams and Belleville East wing Javon Pickett. 

With his ability to score around the basket, rebound and defend the rim, Tilmon will be a major factor for Mr. Basketball this year as long as he is healthy from his dislocated shoulder. Tilmon should also help East St. Louis quite a bit, as the Flyers finished 12-14 last season before being eliminated by Belleville East in a Class 4A regional semifinal game. 

Illinois high school basketball is getting quite a bit of talent back in the state this season as Tilmon joins other Division I prospects like Alonzo Verge (Thornton) and Joey St. Pierre (Richmond-Burton) in returning to the Land of Lincoln. The return of Tilmon and Verge, in particular, means that the Mr. Basketball race could be really crowded next season and it should make for a fun storyline to keep track of thoughout the winter. 

95 Days to Kickoff: Waubonsie Valley

95 Days to Kickoff: Waubonsie Valley

NBCSportsChicago.com preps reporter "Edgy" Tim O'Halloran spotlights 100 high school football teams in 100 days. The first 75 team profiles will focus on teams making strides across Chicagoland and elsewhere in the state. Starting July 30, we'll unveil the @NBCSPrepsTop 25 Power Rankings, leading up to kickoff on Friday, Aug. 24.

School: Waubonsie Valley

Head coach: Paul Murphy

Assistant coaches: Ron Griffin, Tom Baumgarnter, Chris Genslinger, Brad Caldwell, Josh Cuttone, Noel Soto, Ryan Voitik, Duane Butts and Ken Anderson

How they fared in 2017: 4-5 (4-4 DuPage Valley Conference). Waubonsie Valley failed to qualify for the IHSA playoff field.

2018 Regular Season Schedule:

Aug. 24 @ Oak Park-River Forest

Aug. 31 vs Libertyville

Sept 7 @ Neuqua Valley

Sept. 14 @ Edwardsville

Sept. 21 vs Naperville North

Sept. 28 vs Neuqua Valley

Oct. 5 vs Prairie Ridge

Oct. 12 @ Naperville Central

Oct. 19 @ Metea Valley

[MORE: 96 Days to Kickoff: Jacobs]

Biggest storyline: It's all about the schedule. Can the Warriors survive a challenging lineup --which includes playing Neuqua Valley twice-- and make the playoffs?

Names to watch this season: WR Julian Cain and DL Avante Rogers

Biggest holes to fill: The Warriors will have several new faces on both the offensive and defensive lines in 2018. 

EDGY's Early Take: It's not often that veteran head coach Paul Murphy and his Warriors view the playoffs from home. But that's what happened last year. They were the first Waubonsie team since 2006 to do just that. Look for the Warriors to rely on a strong group of receivers to bounce back this fall. They also feature a good group of underclassmen ready to step up. Also, they will need to get used to life in the newly-realigned DuPage Valley Conference. The 2018 schedule includes two games against big district rival Neuqua Valley and a loaded non-conference slate which includes some heavy hitters. 

96 Days to Kickoff: Jacobs

96 Days to Kickoff: Jacobs

NBCSportsChicago.com preps reporter "Edgy" Tim O'Halloran spotlights 100 high school football teams in 100 days. The first 75 team profiles will focus on teams making strides across Chicagoland and elsewhere in the state. Starting July 30, we'll unveil the @NBCSPrepsTop 25 Power Rankings, leading up to kickoff on Friday, Aug. 24.

School: Jacobs

Head coach: Bill Mitz

Assistant coaches: Bubba Smith, Mike Warren, Brian Zimmerman, JM Foote, Ryan Arndt and Bob Mackey

How they fared in 2017: 6-4 (5-3 Fox Valley Conference). Jacobs made the Class 7A playoff field. The Golden Eagles lost to Lincoln-Way West in opening round action. 

2018 Regular Season Schedule:

Aug. 24 Hampshire 

Aug. 31 @ Huntley 

Sept. 7 Dundee-Crown 

Sept. 14 @ McHenry 

Sept. 21 Neuqua Valley 

Sept. 28 Prairie Ridge 

Oct. 5 @ Cary-Grove 

Oct. 12 Crystal Lake South 

Oct. 19 @ Crystal Lake Central

Biggest storyline: Can the Golden Eagles move up in the Fox Valley Conference pecking order in 2018?

Names to watch this season: OT Joacheim Price and OL Nick Zonta

Biggest holes to fill: The Golden Eagles will need to replace its entire starting linebacker group from a season ago.

EDGY's Early Take: Year in and year out, Jacobs is always a factor in the rugged Fox Valley Conference (seven playoff appearances in the last eight years). The Golden Eagles return some starters in several key spots. If the underclassmen group can step up this summer, look for Jacobs to challenge for the FVC conference title and a higher seed in 7A come IHSA playoff time.