Illini Football 2020

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A great man and spokesperson for UI. Plus a good coach. Parents of the men Lovie is recruiting should hear this interview. Not that many P5 coaches are as humble and empathetic than Lovie. Sure you can criticize his play calling, time management of a game, but he is well respected man.
This is the most important thing. I want to win, don't get me wrong, but I absolutely want leaders of men as the coaches of my favorite teams. Lovie epitomizes what you want in a coach of your son and I hope more recruits parents see that
 
Chevy Chase, Maryland
Just watched Lovie's interview with Mike Turico. Coach Smith is truly a fine man and the players are fortunate to have him as their coach. It reminded me of an article that ran in the Wall Street Journal in the mid-'90s about Lou Tepper's diligent work to bridge racial divides among his players. It was a fundamental part of the program at that time. It flowed, apparently, from his deep religious faith. He was apparently a fine man, too, and reflected well on the University.
 
Just watched Lovie's interview with Mike Turico. Coach Smith is truly a fine man and the players are fortunate to have him as their coach. It reminded me of an article that ran in the Wall Street Journal in the mid-'90s about Lou Tepper's diligent work to bridge racial divides among his players. It was a fundamental part of the program at that time. It flowed, apparently, from his deep religious faith. He was apparently a fine man, too, and reflected well on the University.
Tepper was a fine man. He was also fired after five years with a record of 25-31-2. Lovie would need to go undefeated this year to have a similar record (27-34 including a bowl win).
 
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Tepper was a fine man. He was also fired after five years with a record of 25-31-2. Lovie would need to go undefeated this year to have a similar record (27-34 including a bowl win).
While this is true, it is a bit disingenuous in that the situation each inherited was much different. Tepper inherited a program that was in the best shape of my lifetime and was fired after a 2 win season. Lovie inherited a program that was close to the worst in my lifetime and brought us back to a bowl game. Painfully & slowly, but at least we are showed an improvement over the last couple of years.
 
Chevy Chase, Maryland
Tepper was a fine man. He was also fired after five years with a record of 25-31-2. Lovie would need to go undefeated this year to have a similar record (27-34 including a bowl win).
Well, yes. I didn't want to mention his record. However, I'll take him in a hot minute over Beckman. Tepper wasn't a stellar head coach but he treated his players well and didn't bring dishonor on the program and University as Beckman (and Thomas, for that matter) did. Am not implying, BTW, that such a choice needs to be made.

And since we're on the topic, Mackovic's departure in '91 was IMO the worst thing to happen to the football program since the Slush Fund. Best head coach we'd had in years (better even than White), and the AD to boot. Gone in one fell swoop. I can't forget '89-'90 when Illinois football mattered nationally and we would see ads for our Top 5-10 team's nationally-televised games on ABC while watching Monday Night Football.
 
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While this is true, it is a bit disingenuous in that the situation each inherited was much different. Tepper inherited a program that was in the best shape of my lifetime and was fired after a 2 win season. Lovie inherited a program that was close to the worst in my lifetime and brought us back to a bowl game. Painfully & slowly, but at least we are showed an improvement over the last couple of years.
Depends on your definition of 'much different' I guess. Tepper inherited a program that had gone 6-6 in the prior year under Mackovic (who left prior to the rousing 3-6 loss to UCLA In the John Hancock Bowl) while Lovie inherited a program that had gone 5-6 the prior year under Cubit. I will agree that Mack had an impressive short (four year) run for us but, like each of his other college stops, the program had turned south by the end of his tenure. He left Wake Forest after his third year when he finished 5-6, Texas after six years closing at 4-7, and Arizona in his third year after 1-4 before being fired. Every coach since Elliott has inherited a program at Illinois that was struggling and each struggled to right the ship. Lovie's record has improved after that first year. Perhaps his tenure will prove to be an aberration to a 60 year trend.
 
Chevy Chase, Maryland
Depends on your definition of 'much different' I guess. Tepper inherited a program that had gone 6-6 in the prior year under Mackovic (who left prior to the rousing 3-6 loss to UCLA In the John Hancock Bowl) while Lovie inherited a program that had gone 5-6 the prior year under Cubit. I will agree that Mack had an impressive short (four year) run for us but, like each of his other college stops, the program had turned south by the end of his tenure. He left Wake Forest after his third year when he finished 5-6, Texas after six years closing at 4-7, and Arizona in his third year after 1-4 before being fired. Every coach since Elliott has inherited a program at Illinois that was struggling and each struggled to right the ship. Lovie's record has improved after that first year. Perhaps his tenure will prove to be an aberration to a 60 year trend.
Point taken on Mack's fourth season in '91. However, I believe if he had stayed we would have been relevant on a regular basis. He was in over his head at Texas. Illinois was a good fit for him. And he could coach. What he did with the '88 team, coming off a 3-7-1 season under White, was nothing short of miraculous. Had they beaten Michigan that season they would have gone to the Rose Bowl.
 
Depends on your definition of 'much different' I guess. Tepper inherited a program that had gone 6-6 in the prior year under Mackovic (who left prior to the rousing 3-6 loss to UCLA In the John Hancock Bowl) while Lovie inherited a program that had gone 5-6 the prior year under Cubit. I will agree that Mack had an impressive short (four year) run for us but, like each of his other college stops, the program had turned south by the end of his tenure. He left Wake Forest after his third year when he finished 5-6, Texas after six years closing at 4-7, and Arizona in his third year after 1-4 before being fired. Every coach since Elliott has inherited a program at Illinois that was struggling and each struggled to right the ship. Lovie's record has improved after that first year. Perhaps his tenure will prove to be an aberration to a 60 year trend.
What I mean by different is Mac was 30-16-1 at Illinois vs. Beckham (12-25) + Cubit (5-7). Mac was good enough to get the Texas job; the other two not so much.

When Tepper started there was enough talent that he was able to hit the ground with a decent start.Cubit/ Beck left us a dumpster fire.
 
Chevy Chase, Maryland
What I mean by different is Mac was 30-16-1 at Illinois vs. Beckham (12-25) + Cubit (5-7). Mac was good enough to get the Texas job; the other two not so much.

When Tepper started there was enough talent that he was able to hit the ground with a decent start.Cubit/ Beck left us a dumpster fire.
Some years ago as I was thinking about the late '80s Illini football teams I came across the following Trib article about Mackovic in his first season ('88), and saved it. It's still available on the Web site (link below.) White's teams really tailed off in '86 and '87, partially because of the probationary year in '84, which hurt recruiting.

The dumb luck of Jeff George leaving Purdue after the '86 season for QB-oriented Illinois can't be overstated. He joined us because Purdue's QB-focused coach Leon Burtnett resigned, and Purdue hired Fred Akers, who ran a wishbone offense. Just having JG really boosted Mack in '88 and '89. Got to give White credit for reeling in JG, and recruiting Howard Griffith and other solid players near the end. Still, White's team my senior year in '87 was really weak and the program was demoralized as I recall. Mack's sudden success in '88, and his contrast in demeanor compared with White, was really energizing for the program.

JG was the #1 pick in the '90 draft. What a talent he was. I went to the spring game in '88 when he suited up for the first time. After the first long pass he uncorked the buzz in the small crowd was something. Glad I stayed for grad school and got to enjoy his two seasons with us.

ILLINI`S MACKOVIC SHOULD WIN BIG 10 HONOR IN LANDSLIDE
Ed Sherman | Chicago Tribune | November 9, 1988
https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/ct-xpm-1988-11-09-8802160075-story.html
 
And he's ranked 12th in salary...…..

Ranking College Football Head Coaching Salaries for 2019 Season
CoachSchoolConferenceEst. 2019 Compensation
Dabo SwinneyClemsonACC$10,250,000
Nick SabanAlabamaSEC$8,700,000
Jim HarbaughMichiganBig Ten$7,504,000
Jimbo FisherTexas A&MSEC$7,500,000
Gus MalzahnAuburnSEC$6,705,656
Kirby SmartGeorgiaSEC$6,603,600
Dan MullenFloridaSEC$6,070,000
Tom HermanTexasBig 12$5,500,000
Scott FrostNebraskaBig Ten$5,000,000
Mike GundyOklahoma StateBig 12$5,000,000
Willie TaggartFlorida StateACC$5,000,000
Lovie SmithIllinoisBig Ten$5,000,000
Gary PattersonTexas ChristianBig 12$4,840,717
James FranklinPenn StateBig Ten$4,800,000
Lincoln RileyOklahomaBig 12$4,800,000
Kirk FerentzIowaBig Ten$4,700,000
Ryan DayOhio StateBig Ten$4,500,000
 
South Carolina
And he's ranked 12th in salary...…..

Ranking College Football Head Coaching Salaries for 2019 Season
CoachSchoolConferenceEst. 2019 Compensation
Dabo SwinneyClemsonACC$10,250,000
Nick SabanAlabamaSEC$8,700,000
Jim HarbaughMichiganBig Ten$7,504,000
Jimbo FisherTexas A&MSEC$7,500,000
Gus MalzahnAuburnSEC$6,705,656
Kirby SmartGeorgiaSEC$6,603,600
Dan MullenFloridaSEC$6,070,000
Tom HermanTexasBig 12$5,500,000
Scott FrostNebraskaBig Ten$5,000,000
Mike GundyOklahoma StateBig 12$5,000,000
Willie TaggartFlorida StateACC$5,000,000
Lovie SmithIllinoisBig Ten$5,000,000
Gary PattersonTexas ChristianBig 12$4,840,717
James FranklinPenn StateBig Ten$4,800,000
Lincoln RileyOklahomaBig 12$4,800,000
Kirk FerentzIowaBig Ten$4,700,000
Ryan DayOhio StateBig Ten$4,500,000
Who has the greatest performance to pay gap?
 
Forgottonia
I guess that depends on how we measure performance. If we are strictly looking at record regardless of school or fan expectation then it has to be lovie. If you factor in fan expectations then it could be several coaches. Scott frost stands out to me.
I think it’s too early to know on Frost. He’s had some really nice recruiting classes. When those guys become upper classmen I expect them to contend every year for the West. I see them as perennial top 25, but can they be a top 10-15? Not so sure in todays world of transfers.
 
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