5-Star C Jeremiah Tilmon Requests Release From Illinois National Letter Of Intent

Illinois took its first major hit on the recruiting trail since firing John Groce, as 5-star center Jeremiah Tilmon requested a release from his National Letter of Intent and reopened his recruitment.

Illinois has been praised for hiring Brad Underwood as its new coach, and he’ll have a major task on his hands to keep its top recruit focused on the Fighting Illini.

Five-star center Jeremiah Tilmon wrote in an Instagram post Wednesday that he’s requested a release from his National Letter of Intent with Illinois in order to reopen his recruitment and potentially pursue other options. Tilmon signed with the Fighting Illini when former coach John Groce still held the position.

Jamall Walker was named interim coach after Groce’s firing and Underwood retained him on the Illinois coaching staff. Walker led Tilmon’s recruitment.

“Thank you University of Illinois athletics for understanding my position as a future student athlete that signed to play for Coach Groce but has requested release from NLI after coaching changes,” Tilmon wrote. “My family and I feel it’s only fair that we hear all opportunities and not be stuck in one situation. We will wait patiently onthe release from NLI. Illinois will always remain an option because of my relationship with Coach Walker but this is my future and I need to be certain before I come to campus in June.”

Tilmon is from East St. Louis, Ill., which also is the hometown of new Missouri head coach Cuonzo Martin. Since leaving Cal to take over the Tigers, Martin has hired Michael Porter Sr. as an assistant coach and received a commitment from his son, Michael Porter Jr., who is the No. 1 prospect in the 2017 class.

There’s a strong possibility that Martin could lure Tilmon to Missouri as he seeks to rebuild that program into an SEC powerhouse.

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