Western Illinois have been extremely active on the recruiting trail as they look to rebuild and compete in a loaded Missouri Valley Conference. The defensive line was a point of emphasis this offseason after losing Brandon Arnold and Cole Watts this offseason. The Leathernecks added a major contributor as former Florida A&M defensive lineman Malcolm Moultrie announced his commitment to Western Illinois today on social media.
— Malcolm Moultrie (@MalcolmMoultri1) June 2, 2022
Moultrie announced his transfer from Florida A&M in April and will have four years of eligibility left for the Leathernecks. The 6-foot-1, 300-pound defensive tackle was one of the top signees for the Rattlers in the class of 2020 out of Pensacola, FL. Moultrie was named to the 2nd Team All-Area Team and was a Subway All-Star in his senior season after registering 63 tackles, 17 TFLs, & 9 sacks on the season.
The Western Illinois defensive line looks to be a solid unit with the addition of Moultrie. Raphael Orubo and Daniel Carson also both return after being contributors on the defensive line last season. The Leathernecks signed multiple top defensive lineman in the 2022 recruiting class, including Almarion Bell who was a unanimous 1st Team All-Conference selection and JUCO DL Tre Henry who was an All-District and All-State selection.
The defense is primed for a major improvement in the 2022 season after allowing over 38 points per game and 455 yards per game last season. If the Leathernecks can take a step forward on the defensive side of the ball then I expect a major improvement on their 2-9 season from last year. The Leathernecks open their 2022 season against UT-Martin on September 1st before traveling to face BIG-10 contender Minnesota in Week 2.