GIBSON CITY -- Austin Spiller helped the Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley football team win its second straight IHSA Class 2A state championship by recording 36 tackles, including 8 1/2 for loss of yards, and six interceptions.
 
"I loved playing here with my friends," Spiller said. "I've played with them since I grew up, but I think this is going to be the next step."
 
That next step will be taken with the football program at Illinois Wesleyan University, which he signed a letter of intent on Wednesday to join.
 
"I'm really excited," Spiller said.
 
Spiller visited IWU during GCMS's winter break going back there a couple of weeks prior to Wednesday's signing for an overnight visit
 
"They just really made me feel at home," Spiller said. "I liked how they were similar to how our coaching staff is."
 
While Spiller has not declared a major, he said he wants to get into the field of business -- an ambition that further led Spiller to joining IWU.
 
 "This one was closer to home and just a little bit better-suited for studying what I wanted to study," Spiller said.