Recruiting Parallels

I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say that we’re entering our most important recruiting window (for both football and basketball) in at least a decade. Recruiting is always important, but with the way next year’s teams set up (seniors, seniors, and more seniors), the 2017 class is absolutely crucial. [Read more…]

Looks Like University Of Illinois – Kendall Smith

Perhaps the biggest question facing Lovie Smith when it comes to recruiting: can he end ABI? Can he turn the tide so that recruits coming out of Chicago are no longer headed Anywhere But Illinois? His first move, landing Smalling and Smith (LLC), suggests that he can. [Read more…]

Post-Practice Interviews

Four very different interviews here. ¬†Talking hair (and offensive line) with Austin Schmidt, then “can you maybe be our punt returner as a true freshman?” with incoming recruit MJ McGriff, then “hands look good” with Andrew Davis, and finally “so recruiting, huh?” with RB Coach Thad Ward.¬† [Read more…]

How To Watch Practice

So it’s not a “Spring Game” on Saturday, it’s an “Open Practice”.  What does that mean?  Should you still go?  This post is an attempt to explain what “Open Practice” means. As for whether you should still go, I answer that with LOVIE SMITH. [Read more…]

Spring Practice Interviews

Wind questions for Coach Ligashesky. I say the words SENIOR YEAR to Joe Spencer about a dozen times. A good discussion with Jaylen Dunlap about being #OurPeanut. And then some randomness with Gabe Megginson where he drops some Robert Frost. [Read more…]

Slapdash

Haven’t had much time to write since Wednesday. But I have this 38 minute window right now, so let’s see how many things I can talk about in 38 minutes.¬† [Read more…]

Lovie Smith Interview

I had a chance to sit down one-on-one with Lovie Smith on Thursday evening. Many of you requested after the Josh Whitman interview that I upload these as full podcasts (available on iTunes), so that’s what I’ll try to do with these from now on. There’s a link inside to listen on the site or you can subscribe to the podcast on iTunes. [Read more…]

Looks Like (He’ll Be Coaching At The) University Of Illinois (Again) – Luke Butkus

I’ll be honest – this one surprised me. After 2012, I figured this ship had sailed (perhaps to the NFL for good). But here we are with another Butkus on the sidelines in Champaign. [Read more…]

Looks Like (He’ll Be Coaching At The) University Of Illinois: Garrick McGee

No, I won’t be handing out Tom Cruises to the coaches.  If I had, Lovie would have received 17.  But I do want to talk about each new coach and what they might bring to the suddenly relevant University of Illinois Fighting Illini. [Read more…]

Craig Has The Scout – The 2016 Illini Defense

The 2016 version of the Illinois defense is something I have been looking at for a while based on a post Robert made back in December.  At the time, Mike Phair was named the sole DC for 2016, and with Tim Banks moving on that precipitated a change in the scheme.  Phair comes from the school of the Monte Kiffin 4-3. [Read more…]