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Illinois Football lands High Upside In-State Tight End



Illinois Football lands High Upside In-State Tight End
Twitter: @karsen_konkel

Illinois Football lands High Upside In-State Tight End

What a way to start the Wednesday morning. After a slew of impressive commitments last week, Bret Bielema and his staff added another to the bunch. Karsen Konkel from  Pinckneyville, Illinois, decided to commit to Illinois Football per his Twitter page. Konkel is a 6 foot 6, 225 pound tight end who has recently started to gain some serious traction in recruiting. The rising senior chose to commit to Illinois despite just recently receiving offers from Pitt, Arkansas and Michigan State.

Konkel visited Champaign the prior weekend, however decided to attend an Arkansas camp that earned him an offer. This led many to believe that perhaps he was waiting on some other offers and trending away from Illinois. However, Bret Bielema continues to prove his recruiting prowess.

A position of need

Karsen Konkel fills a huge need. Tip Reiman and Griffin Moore are slated to be two of the more productive tight ends on this roster, however will be running out of eligibility soon. Konkel will need to beef up his 225 frame, however he has the athleticism and physicality to be both a dynamic blocker and receiver. That is something that Illinois has lacked. Daniel Barker was an outstanding receiver, however was not the best blocker. Luke Ford did everything except be a reliable receiving threat. Tip Reiman continues to add some versatility to his elite blocking skills, however Illinois still has lacked that one tight end that does both.

Players like Henry Boyer, Nathan Guinn and Owen Anderson are all impressive prospects, however seem to drift towards one of blocking or receiving. I personally see Konkel being able to handle both if he develops.

Continuing to take in-state prospects

Illinois Football just seems like that program that should be able to lock down kids from central and southern Illinois. They may have difficulty winning the suburbs and the city, given the brands that are around such as Northwestern, Wisconsin, Notre Dame and more. However, kids like Konkel are prospects Illinois must win. In other words, they have to lock down those top 15 prospects from central and southern Illinois to be successful. Bielema and his staff have done just that. They successfully landed Aidan Laughery, JoJo Hayden, Brandon Henderson and Hank Beatty over other power-five programs.

Alex is the Owner of, your go-to source for in depth coverage of the Illinois Fighting Illini. Alex is also the lead content creator and lead editor of all articles on Armchair Illini. He has had articles featured in top media publications like Bleacher Report, YardBarker, Verbal Commits, CBS Sports and more.