Althoff offensive lineman Jordyn Slaughter saw no point in dragging out the college recruitment process.
Almost as soon as the University of Illinois and head football coach Lovie Smith made him an offer, Slaughter gave them his verbal commitment.
“It feels like a long process even though it just started,” he said. “It tires you out talking to coaches, looking at the schools, deciding what’s a good fit for you. At some point you feel like you just want it over and to start looking forward.”
The 6-foot-5, 310-pound tackle is rated a three-star prospect by 24/7 Sports. The BND All-Area Second Team performer also is ranked 75th at offensive tackle nationally in the class of 2018 and No. 4 in the state of Illinois.
Slaughter had so far received offers from Bowling Green State, Eastern Illinois, Southern Illinois, Toledo and Vanderbilt, among others.
Smith made his scholarship pitch to Slaughter at a Lindenwood University-St. Charles camp last week, which prompted the lifelong Illini fan to make an unofficial visit to the Champaign-Urbana campus Friday.
He liked what he saw. Then again, he always had before.
“That’s always been my school at heart. I’ve been a fan since I was a little kid and felt like if they offered that I’d end up going there,” Slaughter said. “It’s a great school, a big school and close to home, so my parents can make it to the home games.
“You can see the loyalty there. The way the people there treat you makes you feel wanted.”
Slaughter said he dedicated himself to the goal of playing college football since his grandfather, Wallace Carson Sr., died three years ago. Though it wasn’t necessarily planned, it didn’t escape Slaughter that his commitment came timed with Father’s Day weekend.
“We were very close and had a tight bond,” Slaughter said. “My dad helped me learn about football. Grandpa helped me learn some things about life, how to handle myself and how to be more humble as a player.”
The early commitment allows Slaughter to focus on his senior season with the Crusaders this fall. Althoff finished last season 11-1, losing to Rochester, 48-47, in the state 4A quarterfinal game.