The Cory Patterson to Trinity Catholic pipeline seems to be paying off as it seems like the Saint Louis high school is preserving the LittyvILLe momentum. First, it helped convince 4 star athlete Isaiah Williams to commit to the Illini, and it has helped to keep others such as 4 star linebacker Shammond Cooper and 3 star offensive tackle Ira Henry, interested.
Teriyon Cooper, or as he is known everywhere else, Mookie Cooper, has been interested in the movement in Champaign. He is a 4 star running back who is ranked as the 91st best overall player in the 2020 class and ranked as the best player in the state of Missouri. He has received 21 total scholarship offers from programs such as Auburn, Georgia, Illinois, Missouri, Michigan, Oklahoma, Ohio State, among many others. His speed and agility adds to a strong skill that makes him one of the most dynamic running backs in the class of 2020. I took some time to talk to him about his recruitment.
AS: How is your recruiting process going and what has been the most enjoyable part about it?
Mookie Cooper: I enjoy meeting all the coaches. Not many people get that opportunity. The offers are a bonus and a blessing.
AS: What are you looking for in a football program?
Mookie Cooper: A school that treats me like family from day one. Distance is a factor but not really. I will make sure my family gets to see me play and that they are happy wherever I go.
AS: How about playing as a freshman? A staff that gets you to the next level?
Mookie Cooper: Yes, I would like to play as a true freshman, if I have the abilities. I don’t want to be held back just because I am a freshman.
AS: What are the strengths of your game? What do you want to improve on?
Mookie Cooper: I think my strength is my vision and my ability to play in space. Also, my speed is very helpful to my game. Something that I could work on is being more aggressive, lowering my shoulder more, and learning more about the game of football as a whole.
AS: High school season is set to start back up in a couple months, what are you doing to get ready for it?
Mookie Cooper: Weight room is just about done. Mostly working on conditioning, running routes, and finding ways to get my lift in.
AS: What are you going to miss the most about high school football and what are you looking forward to when college football comes around?
Mookie Cooper: I’m going to miss some of my brothers that I won’t be teammates with in college. I’ll miss the Saint Louis love and all the packed fans coming to watch us play. In college, I’m looking forward to many workouts a day, enjoying the college lifestyle, and getting that degree.
AS: Of the schools that have offered you, which one’s are you most interested in?
Mookie Cooper: Georgia, Illinois, Nebraska, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, and Texas.
AS: Are you planning on taking any visits soon or over the summer?
Mookie Cooper: Next Weekend, Ohio State. Then from June 15-17, Texas. Georgia and Ole Miss sometime this summer too. Don’t have any other ones planned yet.
AS: Which school would you say, if any, is in the lead for your recruitment?
Mookie Cooper: (chuckles) Good question. Nobody right now.
Mookie Cooper will be one of the most prioritized running backs come 2020. He has the “it” factor that can change a program in a heart beat. His game reminds me of a former B1G Ten running back named Saquon Barkley. He turned out to be pretty good. When it is all said and done, I think Mookie Cooper will be part of the 2020 Illinois recruiting class. Family is important to him and other than Missouri, Illinois allows his parents to come and see him play, especially under his former head coach. He wants to be treated as family from the first day he steps on campus, and what better fan base to do that than at the University of Illinois.