Simmie Cobbs believed Purdue's coaches when they told him they would offer him a scholarship once they saw game film, but that was easier said than done.
Cobbs missed all of his junior season after transferring from Montini to Oak Park, and when he transferred back to Oak Park he missed the first two games this fall because he wasn't cleared to start practicing until just before the season.
Once Cobbs, a 6-foot-4 receiver/defensive back, was able to strut his stuff, the Boilermakers made good on their word earlier this week.
He accepted the offer Wednesday night.
"There was a time I almost gave up," he said. "I don't think things could have gotten any worse. The Montini thing got worse with tuition, then I was told I couldn't go back to Oak Park.
"Once I was told I could play football (for Oak Park) everything started to get better. I couldn't ask for anything more -- a Big Ten school, a great academic school and a free education."
Several recruiting analysts believe Cobbs' unusual situation allowed Purdue to swoop in on a player with a tremendous upside who may have been a national recruit under different circumstances.
Purdue and Eastern Illinois were his only offers.
"I had a bunch of schools tell me, 'Come to our camp,' then I'd go to their camp and they'd say they need to see film. Purdue was different.
"(Assistant recruiting coordinator) Kevin Maurice told me, 'If you get me some film, I’ll get you a scholarship.' "Copyright © 2015, RedEye