The 90 Illini #86: Jack Badovinac
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I really hope I'm right about this whole "I think the plan is for him to redshirt and then replace Kramer at center in 2022" thing. If not, and if he's transferring in to compete for a starting spot on the offensive line this fall, then I'm going to feel silly about ranking him down here at #86. I guess the 80's on this list for 2021 means "players who need to be on the list because there's a chance they play instead of redshirt and if there's someone in the rotation and I didn't even rank them on The 90 Illini I'll feel silly".
86. Jack Badovinac
Year in school: Senior (2 years to play 1)
Height: 6'-2" -- Weight: 295 lbs.
Hometown: Wilmette, Illinois
Former School: Colgate
Five best offers: n/a - transfer from Colgate
Tom Cruise rating:
2020 statistics: Played in 2 games at Colgate (they played two games in the spring at that was their season).
I just wrote his LLUOI post one week ago, so all of this stuff down here will be redundant if you read that post. If you didn't read it, well, here's a good way to take one of my long, rambling LLUOI posts and reduce it to only a few paragraphs.
Badovinac played at Loyola Academy in high school (playing for former Illini John Holocek). He was an all-state lineman and chose Colgate as his college destination. He started for four years at Colgate, although the fourth year wasn't much of a year. The Patriot League suspended play until the spring and then only scheduled four games for each team. And two of Colgate's games were canceled due to positive Covid tests, so he only played in two games.
And those two games, like all NCAA football games, didn't count towards eligibility. So he was a 2-to-play-1 guy coming into the season and he's still a 2-to-play-1 guy headed into 2021. Now he has transferred to Illinois to play out that one season at some point in the next two years.
My guess is the season will be 2022 after Doug Kramer graduates at center. I don't think he's going to beat out Kramer this fall, and the guard rotation seems to be fairly set with three guys (Blake Jeresaty, Verdis Brown, and Alex Pihlstrom) competing for two spots. In the spring game, starters at the three interior spots were Blake Jeresaty at left guard, Doug Kramer at center, and Alex Pihlstrom at right guard.
If that holds true this fall, I expect Badovinac to redshirt (since he's never used his redshirt year). He can still play in four games, but as long as he doesn't play in a fifth game, it's a redshirt season. Then, in 2022, with Kramer and Jeresaty having graduated, my guess would be that the OL would be Verdis Brown at left guard, Jack Badovinac at center, and Alex Pihlstrom at right guard.
So my 2021 outlook for Badovinac would be "play in four games as a backup lineman while taking a redshirt". And then in 2022, he moves up into the teens on this list.