Good things come to those who wait.  Nothing fits that description more right now than the late blooming emergence of a talented sharpshooter in Illinois.  Working his way onto the radar of Division 1 schools, Mapleton (Ill.) Illini Bluffs 2017 small forward Taylor Bruninga now holds three scholarship offers, with the opportunity to accomplish his dream of playing at the highest level.

“It’s really awesome,” Bruninga told NY2LASPORTS.COM. “Growing up, it was always my dream to play D1. Getting a few offers now has been big.”

Eastern Illinois, Illinois State, and Northern Iowa have all offered during Bruninga’s senior year.

Eastern Illinois: “They were the first to offer, so I really appreciate that. I really like the coaching staff. I was over there for a game and the players were really cool.”

Illinois State: “They’re having a really good season. I had an uncle play there. It’s close to home, so my family and friends can come watch me. I like the coaching staff, players, the facilities.”

Northern Iowa: “Big winning tradition. They’ve made the NCAA Tournament the past two years. I really like the coaches too.”

Bruninga also holds a handful of Division 2 offers. He is still considering Wisconsin-Parkside among those offers.

Interest has been coming in from Vanderbilt, Creighton, Indiana State, Drake, Loyola (IL), and Southern Illinois-Edwardsville. 

Both Creighton and Loyola (IL) will watch Bruninga on Thursday. Blue Jays head coach Greg McDermott will be in attendance for Creighton.  “Both seem pretty interested, making the trip out here,” Bruninga said. “I was actually on a visit to Loyola on Sunday and they seemed pretty interested too.”

Bruninga has no future visits scheduled. The 6-foot-7, 190-pound small forward plans to wait until the spring before making a decision.  “I really like the schools I have right now, but I’ll probably take my decision after the season, just so I can take my official visits and get to know them a lot better.”

Bruninga played with the Illinois Irish during the travel season.