Illini getting experience from transfer Shae Meadors

CHAMPAIGN (WCIA) -- 2017 was a year full of question marks for Illinois football.

    But if there was one constant, it was Malik Turner at wide receiver.
    The SHG grad caught multiple passes in every game he played in, and ended his career as a top 10 Illini receiver.
    But now that he's gone, the wide receiver corps is awfully young.
    Illinois is hoping grad transfer Shae Meadors can help bridge that gap.

"He's been around the game and he's going to be able to provide a lot of insight to the younger guys," offensive coordinator Rod Smith said. "Hopefully he can be a good example to those guys."

"I'm an older guy so I've played a lot of football and been around a long time so I just try to teach them and tell them what's right and try to get them to do what's good," Meadors said.

    Meadors transferred to Illinois from Appalachian State, where he caught 81 passes, including eight touchdowns.
    He's 6-foot-2 and gives Illinois a weapon that can go up and get the ball when they need a conversion.

"On the field he's a big body, strong hands," wide receivers coach Andrew Hayes-Stoker said. "Looking forward to him being a guy that can move the chains and help us win some games this season."

    When Meadors decided to leave App State, Illinois was one of his first calls.
    Running backs coach Thad Ward recruited Meadors out of high school, while Ward was at Northern Illinois.

"We just connected like it was the first time so that was a good thing," Meadors said. "Then I got here and seen they were losing a lot of receivers and they were real young and needed some older guys to come in and help them out."

    Saturday marks practice number four out of fifteen during the spring for the Illini.
    They will meet on Sunday, but no on-field work, only meetings and walkthroughs.

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