Looking ahead to 2019

what should i expect from our team next year? obviously we have some great talent coming in and our offense has some legit playmakers in Corbin, Epstein, Smalling, Williams and Thomas, and I really like what I saw from Davis in his few games he played. I also really like flashes that guys like Roundtree, Gay, Phillips, Brown, Hobbs and Watkins have shown the past two years. Obviously we have some talent on the defense coming in as well, but is it realistic to think that guys like Cooper and Benson can have a major impact as freshmen? Is 7-8 wins too optimistic? Is 6 wins realistic? Or are we looking at another 4 win year?

the last few months have kept my eyes on this part of the site consistently for the first time in about 5 years.

However; being an Underwood believer, and loving what we are bringing in next year recruiting wise and returning some nice pieces, should I be more excited for football or basketball? and which program has a better 2 year trajectory?

side note— love the Lovie Beard.
 
I've been a diehard Illini fan since 1988 (7-years-old) when I saw my first game on ABC - Dick Vitale was tolerable at that time. There is no question in my mind that football is currently in a better position. That said, it is much easier to turn around basketball as one recruit can make a huge difference in trajectory.

In retrospect, I was a big supporter of the Lovie hire and very down on Underwood, which likely still factors into my feelings now. Nevertheless Go Illini!
 
A better position than 1988? Are you out of your mind?

We've got a loooooooooong way to go to get back to 1988. It can be done, but we should savor every step along the way if we're able to start the climb next year.
I read the OP as being a fan since 1988 and the opinion was that football is in a better position than basketball currently.
 
what should i expect from our team next year? obviously we have some great talent coming in and our offense has some legit playmakers in Corbin, Epstein, Smalling, Williams and Thomas, and I really like what I saw from Davis in his few games he played. I also really like flashes that guys like Roundtree, Gay, Phillips, Brown, Hobbs and Watkins have shown the past two years. Obviously we have some talent on the defense coming in as well, but is it realistic to think that guys like Cooper and Benson can have a major impact as freshmen? Is 7-8 wins too optimistic? Is 6 wins realistic? Or are we looking at another 4 win year?

the last few months have kept my eyes on this part of the site consistently for the first time in about 5 years.

However; being an Underwood believer, and loving what we are bringing in next year recruiting wise and returning some nice pieces, should I be more excited for football or basketball? and which program has a better 2 year trajectory?

side note— love the Lovie Beard.
How about excitement for both, they've both been down for a while. We have seen positives in each recently, share the Love!
 
what should i expect from our team next year?
I think this is actually a pretty easy answer this year. We should expect at least 6 wins and a bowl game. Anything less, barring some bad luck with significant injuries, missed kicks or freak plays deciding games, etc and I’m pretty confident that JW moves on from Lovie. Winning more than 6 games with an improved offense and vastly improved defense and we’re in better shape than we’ve been in for over a decade.

It’s weird in that no scenario would shock me. We could win 4 or less and have the same terrible defense or win 8 or 9 and look like a contender in the West and neither would shock me.
 
How about excitement for both, they've both been down for a while. We have seen positives in each recently, share the Love!
I'd love to have the optimism in hoops but guard play still has me very, very concerned for next season - specifically how the ball will be properly distributed inside. We already know the guys can jack threes.
 
Palcho, Lowe, Kramer, green, Boyd, Meyers, slaughter, petttibon, stover, cerny. We have a two deep! Kirts, trainer also. Pearl and brown emergency if needed probably. Forget if there is other? Good shape for this year and next, but need to add some more in next class, 3 sounds good?!?
 
Likes: Dren1
Alright guys, as someone who admittedly has cared much more about Illini hoops than illini football since i’ve been following illini sports (since 2004, not bandwagon, i was in 2nd grade when we went to the final four and that team was my first ever introduction to college hoops and basketball in general).

what should i expect from our team next year? obviously we have some great talent coming in and our offense has some legit playmakers in Corbin, Epstein, Smalling, Williams and Thomas, and I really like what I saw from Davis in his few games he played. I also really like flashes that guys like Roundtree, Gay, Phillips, Brown, Hobbs and Watkins have shown the past two years. Obviously we have some talent on the defense coming in as well, but is it realistic to think that guys like Cooper and Benson can have a major impact as freshmen? Is 7-8 wins too optimistic? Is 6 wins realistic? Or are we looking at another 4 win year?
I’ve religuously read the hoops thread for about 8+ years and haven’t followed the football threads much since the Scheelhaase days, but the last few months have kept my eyes on this part of the site consistently for the first time in about 5 years. Having seen people hype up classes in basketball, and predict 20+ win seasons for years, I have been reading these football threads with a cup of salt.

However; being an Underwood believer, and loving what we are bringing in next year recruiting wise and returning some nice pieces, should I be more excited for football or basketball? and which program has a better 2 year trajectory?

Sorry for the long post and if I am rambling, but I am legitimently curious. Illini basketball being successful is great, but the years where football is actually somewhat relavent is almost more special to me considering that I only remember about 2-3 seasons since I’ve been following illini athletics where I have been excited and happy with the results.

side note— love the Lovie Beard.
Honestly, there is no past-based evidence that either team is going to be good. Both teams were horrific this past year (Basketball's current season).

Basketball and Football have unique properties.

A basketball turnaround requires one player. If Lebron James had committed to a college, he would have made any team instantly good. Also, any team could potentially win on any night, this is what makes the NCAA tournament so fun to watch. However, a handful of teams are more likely to win a championship, as they continually pass the championship back and forth across winning programs. But, even as good as a team like Duke is playing now, it doesn't mean they will win it all. The best players on the team can make or break a program and the best play on a given day will win.

Football is almost the opposite. The team can only be as good as the worst player on the field. This is somewhat of an overstatement, but if a team has a bad corner, they can go at him all day long. And football is pretty much locked up at the top spots. Alabama and Clemson and only a handful of other schools will have a shot at the title. Each season where a team can upgrade a position the team should be better. For non-speed positions, usually upper class-men are considerably better than younger players (because of development).

In Basketball, it looks like we will be much better next year. The team will have a year to gel, we add a beast in Kofi, and we have more good players that will get added. We could have a tournament/Sweet 16 type team. If Ayo leaves early (which I don't think he will leave before year 2), I think we are a borderline NCAA team. I think the talent is there, but our season will get determined in the preseason and I am not sure that Kofi and the new guys will be ready. Also, losing Ayo would make game plans shift, so I would not be high on our early season, but I would be high on our late season.

In Football, I would expect that we would win 5 games next year. We have a lot of juniors that will be starting. We added some much needed speed. But I think the team is still thin. Any injuries on defense would create easy to exploit holes. And it is hard to imagine college football team with few injuries. I think we are one year away from a breakout year. I think 2020 is our year where we win 8+ games.
 
Likes: KevinC
Honestly, there is no past-based evidence that either team is going to be good. Both teams were horrific this past year (Basketball's current season).

Basketball and Football have unique properties.

A basketball turnaround requires one player. If Lebron James had committed to a college, he would have made any team instantly good. Also, any team could potentially win on any night, this is what makes the NCAA tournament so fun to watch. However, a handful of teams are more likely to win a championship, as they continually pass the championship back and forth across winning programs. But, even as good as a team like Duke is playing now, it doesn't mean they will win it all. The best players on the team can make or break a program and the best play on a given day will win.

Football is almost the opposite. The team can only be as good as the worst player on the field. This is somewhat of an overstatement, but if a team has a bad corner, they can go at him all day long. And football is pretty much locked up at the top spots. Alabama and Clemson and only a handful of other schools will have a shot at the title. Each season where a team can upgrade a position the team should be better. For non-speed positions, usually upper class-men are considerably better than younger players (because of development).

In Basketball, it looks like we will be much better next year. The team will have a year to gel, we add a beast in Kofi, and we have more good players that will get added. We could have a tournament/Sweet 16 type team. If Ayo leaves early (which I don't think he will leave before year 2), I think we are a borderline NCAA team. I think the talent is there, but our season will get determined in the preseason and I am not sure that Kofi and the new guys will be ready. Also, losing Ayo would make game plans shift, so I would not be high on our early season, but I would be high on our late season.

In Football, I would expect that we would win 5 games next year. We have a lot of juniors that will be starting. We added some much needed speed. But I think the team is still thin. Any injuries on defense would create easy to exploit holes. And it is hard to imagine college football team with few injuries. I think we are one year away from a breakout year. I think 2020 is our year where we win 8+ games.
I'll take the over on your 5 win projection, without even hearing about Ford, Thomas or Tate getting clearance or agreeing to transfer.
 
Palcho, Lowe, Kramer, green, Boyd, Meyers, slaughter, petttibon, stover, cerny. We have a two deep! Kirts, trainer also. Pearl and brown emergency if needed probably. Forget if there is other? Good shape for this year and next, but need to add some more in next class, 3 sounds good?!?
I feel like we should move Brown and Pearl to offensive line from day 1. We have 15 or so guys fighting for 4 spots on the defensive line and Brown and Pearl are probably two guys that will find themselves starting third string or lower. Brown was a 4 Star Center coming out of high school and Pearl a 3 Star Tackle. My assumption as of now is that Petitbon wins the starting Guard spot so I would love if Brown was the first man off the bench for the interior positions and Boyd for the tackle positions. I would feel much more comfortable going into the season with this than putting in a walk on like Stover or a freshman like Meyers you don’t know you can trust.