In the third edition of the Freshman Spotlight Series, It was time to turn it over to the offense. First year offensive coordinator Rod Smith is at the helm and adding completely new dimensions. He also hand picked a couple of recruits late in the recruiting cycle. QB Matt Robinson and RB Kenyon Sims, both from California, fit exactly what Rod Smith wants in his offense.

Kenyon Sims is from San Diego (Mission Bay HS) and had some very successful programs in hot pursuit before he committed to the Illini. Utah initially received a commitment from Kenyon, before he changed his mind in November of last year. Insert Rod Smith, and the rest is history. I caught up with the 5’11 190 pound Running back before he lands in Champaign to chat about his summer conditioning and the Impact he will have in his first season as an Illini

Interview with Kenyon Sims

I first wanted to know how his summer has been and what he was doing to stay ready before camp starts in August 3rd.

Kenyon said “My summers been good, I can’t complain, I live in America’s finest city. I’ve been training with my trainers a lot to stay in shape at carterswayathletix, spellman performance and with coach Daniel. I am excited and ready to hit camp next week.”

I asked Kenyon what he will bring to the Illini, and if he sees himself earning playing time early?

He told me “I’ll bring that dog, you know a savage, a baller and a hard worker. I most definitely will push and earn playing time.”

I then followed up to see how he sees himself fitting in with Rod Smith’s offense.

Kenyon told me “I see myself fitting perfectly in coach Rods offense. I’m an all around, all purpose back.”

Kenyon told me he arrives August 2nd, a day before camp starts.

Swami’s Take

This season will have a variety of talented runners. What interests me the most, is how will Rod Smith use the backs? How deep of a rotation will he utilize? One thing is for sure, every back who isn’t a freshman has missed big chunks of time with injury. Mike Epstein, Ravon Bonner and Reggie Corbin seem to be favorites to take the most reps, but Kenyon has an elusiveness and good size that may make it hard for Rod Smith not to give him some snaps. This is another battle in camp I will keep a close eye on.

Illini offensive excitement is in the air, a funny concept isn’t it?

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