Illinois lands coveted Class of 2013 quarterback

New Illinois head coach Tim Beckman is wasting no time making an impact on the local recruiting trail, as the Fighting Illini landed quarterback Aaron Bailey, one of the best players in the Class of 2013, on Thursday.

Bailey, who attended one of the team's spring practices, gave his verbal commitment to the Illini after being pursued by major powers such as Nebraska, Notre Dame, Ohio State and Wisconsin.

The 6-2, 215-pounder led Bolingbrook High School (Bolingbrook, Ill.) to the Class 8A state championship last fall, passing for 1,039 yards and 10 touchdowns and running for 2,008 yards and 30 scores. He will join teammate Robbie Bain, an offensive lineman, in Champaign.

Landing Bailey is a big step for the Illinois program, particularly because he is an in-state product. If Beckman can keep the best players home while sprinkling in players from around the Midwest as well as solid players from states like Florida and Texas, the future will be bright for a program that never could find consistency under Ron Zook.

Email dave.miller@nationalfootballpost.com or follow me on Twitter at Miller_Dave

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