Illinois football has eight verbal commitments for the class of 2018 so far but Lovie Smith and staff are looking to land the biggest one yet.

Three star QB Woodrow “Trey” Lowe, listed at 6-foot-4, 200 pounds from Bolivar, Tennessee, will be making his decision next week. Lowe visited the Illini back in March and told the media that the offer “meant a lot.”

I spoke with Lowe over 4th of July weekend and he informed me his recruitment will be ending when he returns home from vacation on Sunday. A decision will be announced Monday or Tuesday. Most believe it will come down to West Virginia and the Illini, though Lowe also has offers from North Carolina and Houston.

He’s a mobile quarterback with great accuracy and precision. Illinois offensive coordinator Garrick McGee is looking for the next Lamar Jackson, a player he helped recruit to Louisville. While that may not be an easy task, Lowe would fit in perfectly for his offense as he uses a lot of read options at Central Bolivar High school and when needed is an effective runner.

Lowe is very similar to a former fan favorite who played on Ron Zook’s Rose Bowl team of 2008. Eddie McGee was a long lanky quarterback who was a dual threat coming out of high school. Both were highly touted, but Trey appears to have a more efficient arm at this stage. McGee was more elusive in the open field but watching Lowe’s film, you can see he has speed to create distance in space.

Illinois has Coran Taylor already signed, but this could make for something similar to what McGee had during his time. Coran is similar to Juice Williams in stature and arm strength. This could create a spicy quarterback competition along with freshman Cam Thomas.

A commitment from Lowe would continue the momentum the Illini staff has built over recent weeks with several out-of-state recruits. With powerhouse Big 12 and ACC schools vying for Lowe’s services, This could be another feather in the cap for Lovie Smith. Illinois could have taken other quarterbacks with this class for 2018 but have chose to make Trey Lowe their priority. Will it pay off? Illini fans will be anxiously waiting over the next few days.

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