Rodney Coe Impressed With Illini On Visit

Rodney Coe (Ryan Easterling)

The Fighting Illini football team hosted four players on official visits Saturday. Among them was highly rated Edwardsville running back Rodney Coe. His team had a poor season, but that isn't detracting from the recruiting frenzy around him. Coe enjoyed his visit.

Rodney Coe is one of the highest ranked football players in the 2011 class in Illinois. The 6'-3", 230 pound running back chose to make Illinois one of his five official visits. He has positive things to say about his weekend on campus.

"I had a very good time. I loved the place, along with the players and coaches."

He shared some of the details of his visit.

"When I got there I met with the coach, we did the academic talk. Friday was kind of a chill day. We went out to eat and all that stuff. We went to practice and hung out with the players.

"They took me on a tour of the facilities Saturday, met with the coaches, went to the game and hung with the players. And then today it was like calm me down, and coaches gave me more reasons to choose the school."

Despite the discouraging loss to Minnesota Saturday, Illini players and coaches didn't let that interfere with putting their best foot forward.

"They showed me a very good time. It was a tough loss, but there wasn't anything bad. I enjoyed it."

Illini running back coach DeAndre Smith is his recruiting coach. Coe thinks highly of him.

"I like him a lot. He's a cool guy. He'd be my position coach. I could see myself playing for him."

Coe has said in the past he preferred a team that ran the ball a lot. Illinois certainly qualifies.

"They've got an offense like what I'm looking for. I'm pretty sure they'll try to get me the ball. They said I would be a key player. They'll use me in a lot of ways to let me make plays."

Besides the style of offense, what else is he looking for in a school?

"The coaches, the environment there, the academics."

Former Illini grad assistant Andre Collins is helping Coe with the details of his recruitment.

"He has been helping me out. He's not being biased. He's letting me choose. He's not picking favorites."

Coe will not be graduating early, but he will continue making his official visits the next few weeks.

"This week I'll go to Iowa, and then I'll be going to Kansas, Kansas State and Arkansas."

Coe didn't have the senior season he hoped to have.

"Our first week our head coach left, and we got another head coach. The season wasn't that good. I got a concussion. I had to sit out a couple games, but I'm healthy now."

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