Lunt Transfers to Illinois
June 18, 2013
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - University of Illinois head coach Tim Beckman announced Tuesday that quarterback Wes Lunt (Rochester, Ill./Rochester HS) has signed a tender of financial aid and will transfer to Illinois after spending last season at Oklahoma State University. Lunt will not be able to play in 2013 due to NCAA transfer rules. Beginning with the 2014 season, he will have three years of eligibility remaining.
"We're thrilled that Wes has decided to come back home to the state of Illinois to play for the Fighting Illini," Beckman said. "As he showed last season starting as a true-freshman for Oklahoma State, he's an exceptional talent and an exceptional person. He'll have a year to work with offensive coordinator Bill Cubit, our coaching staff and his teammates learning the offense before competing for the starting job in 2014."
Lunt enrolled early at Oklahoma State in spring 2012 and entered the fall atop the depth chart at quarterback. The 6-5, 210-pound signal caller made five starts for the Cowboys as a true-freshman, the first three games of the season and two in the middle of the season, before injuries ended both streaks. He was the first true-freshman quarterback to start a season-opener at OSU since at least 1950, completing 11-of-11 passes for 123 yards in less than a quarter of play in an 84-0 win over Savannah State. He followed that up with a 436-yard, four-touchdown performance at Arizona in his first road start. For the season, Lunt completed 81-of-131 passes (61.8 percent) for 1,108 yards, six touchdowns and seven interceptions in six games.
Lunt was a two-time state champion in high school, leading Rochester to class 4A state titles in 2010 and '11. As a senior, he was an all-state pick by the Chicago Tribune and was the Champaign News-Gazette state player of the year after throwing for 3,650 yards, 31 touchdowns and just four interceptions despite missing several games early in the season due to injury. Lunt set a state record with 590 passing yards and four touchdowns in the 2011 state title game at Illinois' Memorial Stadium. Over his last two seasons at Rochester, Lunt amassed more than 7,000 passing yards, had 65 touchdown passes and just eight interceptions. He was a four-star recruit and was ranked the No. 7 QB in the nation coming out of high school by Rivals.
In addition to Lunt, Beckman also has added 6-4, 240-pound junior college tight end Trevor Kanteman (Woodland Hills, Calif./Royal HS/Pierce College) to the roster for the 2013 season. Kanteman attended Pierce College in Woodland Hills, Calif., last fall but did not play football due to injury. He caught 50 passes for 554 yards and two touchdowns as a senior at Royal High School in 2011, leading the Marmonte League in both receptions and receiving yards. He was named one of the top five tight ends in Southern California by the Los Angeles Times and earned first-team All-Maurmonte League and All-Ventura County honors as a senior, despite playing in only seven games before injuring his knee. Kanteman is immediately eligible to play for the Fighting Illini in 2013 and is considered a true-freshman.