9/1/12 Illinois vs Western Michigan
9/8/12 Illinois @ Arizona St
9/15/12 Illinois vs Charleston Southern
9/22/12 Illinois vs Louisiana Tech
9/29/12 Illinois vs Penn St
10/6/12 Illinois @ Wisconsin
10/13/12 Illinois @ Michigan
10/20/12 -Bye Week-
10/27/12 Illinois vs Indiana
11/3/12 Illinois @ Ohio St
11/10/12 Illinois vs Minnesota
11/17/12 Illinois vs Purdue
11/24/12 Illinois @ Northwestern
2012 Key Returnees (class reflects class at the start of next season) Offense: OC Graham Pocic (RS Sr)- Pocic should be the anchor for the OL once again and have a shot at the Rimington Trophy IMO.
Defense: LB Jonathan Brown (JR)- 108 Tackles, 19.5 Tackles for Loss, 6 Sacks, 1 INT, 1 FR, 1 FF. It is safe to say that Brown is a ****ing stud. IMO he was the best player on the team last season. That is saying a lot with how good Whitney was.
Offense: RB Dami Ayoola- Out of national powerhouse St. Thomas Aquinas, Ayoola is expected to be a contributor right away at RB. He is our Jason Ford replacement IMO.
Defense: S/OLB TaJarvis Fuller- He enrolled early and will be on the field for Spring Practice and the Spring Game. He is looked at as a playmaker with great instincts.
2012's Top 3 Storylines 1. Who's the QB?
Beckman wants to run the spread. He and Gonzalez both have ties to Urban Meyer. But, Meyer won a championship with Chris Leak at the helm and he wasn't an option QB. Riley is clearly the better passer. Nate is the better athlete. I expect an open competition and Nate to end up going to WR with Riley starting at QB. Nate will end up in Eddie McGee's role IMO.
2. Can the Defense keep it up?
This unit was absolutely amazing under Coach Vic; top 10 in the country and churning out NFL talent. I've liked what I've read about Tim Banks. Buchanan has to adequately take over for Whitney. Spence has to continue to improve. Brown needs to keep being a crazy SoB. But, maybe most importantly we need to find two starting caliber Safeties.
3. Where are the playmakers on O?
AJ Jenkins is gone. Next year I am expecting a number of players to step up. If Donovonn Young can solve the fumbling problems he will be full on beast mode. Ferguson looked like lightning in a bottle. Millines needs to stay on the field and he will adequately replace Jenkins IMO. The two I expect the most out of are Young and Jon Davis. They are future NFL studs IMO.
Last edited by BCB mwat15; 02-02-2012 at 02:58 PM.
My brother is going to U of I in the fall, he's got his season tix. Me, my dad and my little brother all got ours too. I'm excited.
I'm trusting that our offense is going to be dominant this season. Scheelhaase should be impressive in his second season. Hopefully he was on some offseason workouts to help improve his arm strength. Because, really, that was the only problem he had last year. We have some nice recievers as well that showed promise last year. Darius Millines is a guy that I'm hoping breaks out.
Jason Ford is going to have to step up and be the workhorse back. I think he'll be ready to break out. He's a beast, consistent carries will do him a heck of a lot of good. When he got carries last year he put up some nice numbers.
Defense is a bit of a mystery. Terry Hawthorne is a shut down corner and a playmaker. He needs to stay healthy. Other than that, I'm a little bit in the dark. Michael Buchanon should be good.
It will be interesting, this team has a ton of promise. If a lot of things go right, we'll be playing on New Year's Day. Either way, this team should be fun to watch and will put up points. Can't wait for the season.
Last edited by CubbieSteve; 07-04-2011 at 11:07 PM.
There have been a few news worthy items in Illinois football since my last update.
1. Two of our top incoming prospects, DT Clint Tucker and our top recruit DB Dondi Kirby, both failed to meet academic requirements. Tucker enrolled in a prep school and is expected on campus after next year.
2. Jason Ford was arrested for driving with a suspended license and missed pretty much all of spring ball with an injury. Troy Pollard, AJ Jenkins, and Darius Millines also all missed time with injuries.
So, with Camp Rantoul about a month away I'm looking forward to some players I think are going to have breakout seasons:
1. LB Jonathan Brown (Soph)- Bussey and Martez are gone, leaving a huge void. But, Brown has the talent to be a big time playmaker at LB. Plus he is nuts which is always good at LB.
2. WR Ryan Lankford (Soph)- With Jenkins and Millines missing most of the spring Lankford took advantage and was Scheelhaase's favorite target. He's got Ryan Broyles-esque talent IMO.
3. CB Terry Hawthorne (JR)- After missing most of last season with injuries it is time for him to put it together. He and Tavon Wilson should anchor a secondary that is the strength of the D.
4. DE/LB Michael Buchanon (JR)- The Bandit LB is all about making plays. With Nurse and Liuget gone Buchanon needs to flash some improved pass rushing skills.
5. RB Jason Ford (SR)- Once he was considered to be the superior RB to Mikel Leshoure. With one season left it is time to pick up where Mikel left off.