A pair of Illinois brothers who have emerged as elite recruits both committed to Minnesota on Wednesday while taking their second unofficial visit to the school.
Athan and Dino Kaliakmanis, twin brothers at Antioch (Ill.) Community High School, became the second and third pledge to Minnesota’s Class of 2021. Athan, a 6-foot-4, 190-pound pro style passer, is likely the more highly considered of the two (neither has a star rating yet because the Class of 2021 has yet to be rated), though the 6-foot-2, 188-pound Dino could also emerge as one of 2021’s better wide receivers in the Midwest.
Athan threw for 2,083 yards and 25 touchdowns, completing 115 of 193 passes, while rushing for 578 yards and 11 touchdowns as a sophomore. His brother caught 36 receptions for 594 yards (16.5 average) and 5 touchdowns, also as a sophomore.
Dino has other scholarship offers from Florida Atlantic, Kansas, Northern Illinois and Toledo, while his brother already has scholarship offers from Iowa, Iowa State, Tennessee and Syracuse, as well as some of the schools recruiting Dino, save Kansas and Toledo.
Both players announced their commitment on Twitter Wednesday, with Athan posting about his commitment first and Dino following some 13 minutes later.
Regardless of the timing, and the (expected) lack of a formal ranking, it’s clear the Kaliakmanis brothers are the biggest recruits this early in the cycle for Minnesota in some time.
In an interview with the Daily Herald, a suburban Chicago newspaper that covers the brothers at Antioch, the ability for the two to play together at the same school was a major focus and driver behind their decision.
“We always knew we were going to play together,” Athan Kaliakmanis told the Daily Herald. “I love playing with him. He loves playing with me. I’m so glad we’re going (to Minnesota) together.”
The two brothers are new athletes to Antioch, having spent their first two high school seasons at Carmel Catholic. Still, Athan is confident the brothers will deliver when they get to Minnesota together.
“I want to be a part of what Coach Fleck is building,” Athan Kaliakmanis told the Daily Herald. “I feel like the program is on the uprise. I really like where it’s heading. It felt like home. I felt very comfortable there, and I just love the culture. I love everything about it.”