Minnesota continues to recruit the state of Illinois well. This time, the Gophers landed a massive offensive lineman out of Chicago.

On Sunday, Minnesota received a verbal pledge from 6-foot-8, 280-pound offensive lineman Cameron James, who is now the 17th member of the Golden Gophers’ 2021 class. He’s also the sixth player out of the state of Illinois to commit to P.J. Fleck and the staff.

James had received 18 offers on the recruiting trail. He chose Minnesota over Power Five offers from Arizona, Indiana, Iowa State, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan State, Missouri, Purdue and West Virginia.

Fleck has been known to recruit big-bodied offensive lineman, and James fits the mold for Minnesota’s front line. His long arms and massive frame allows him to move defensive lineman around and create running lanes. He also has the ability to make an early impact with the Golden Gophers once he arrives on campus.

James is ranked as the No. 44 offensive tackle in this year’s class and is the No. 12 player out of Illinois, according to 247Sports. Overall, James ranks at No. 471.

Minnesota’s 2021 class still ranks inside the top 10 nationally, coming in at No. 9 right now. The Golden Gophers also sit at No. 3 in the B1G, behind Ohio State and Michigan.