Looking ahead to 2020

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See us 5-7 next year. 3-0 non conference. 2-7 Big 10. Defense has to stop someone and not rely on turnovers or opponent miscues.(MSU)Cant be giving up 400-500 ys of offense and expect to win in the Big 10. The focus of getting to six wins a year seems hollow considering the OOC slate and Rutgers. Lovie has to start getting near .500 in conference play to be meaningful. Thanks for this year though at least we had Wisky and MSU games to remember.
One rule in football is that turnovers are allowed. And generally speaking, the team that wins the turnover battle, tends to win the game. The notion that turnovers is not the defense stopping the other team, makes no sense. Literally, in many of our wins or near wins, we won the turnover battle, lost the yardage game and still won or had opportunities to win. And we beat good big ten teams. Our losses, generally speaking, came at points where we were missing a host of key players. I would recommend focusing on how we fill our depth, not whether our turnovers were legitimate.
 
Congratulations to the 2019 team. You provided us with excitement and thrills; you typically played hard; you were invited to a bowl game; and you were an obvious improvement over the 2018 team. You were really frustrating to watch at times, but you did not embarrass us or yourselves.
As for 2020, there is a lot of room (and necessity) for improvement. I suppose it's a good thing that Lovie keeps saying that next year's team will be really good, but I'm not necessarily buying it. We need some changes made in the coaching staff, and we need to hit it big in the transfer portal again. There are opportunities to improve; let's make some smart (and maybe difficult/painful) decisions and make it happen.
Like many people on this board I'd like to reach the point where the Illini fans can have reasonable expectations every year of a solid recruiting class and a bowl invitation. The 2019 season was a step in the right direction, but let's not assume that good things will happen next season simply because many of the same players will be returning.
the way college football works is that good things happen when most of the starters are returning. So I’m not sure what you mean.

truthfully, winning and losing football games has a considerable amount of luck. Would the cal game have been different if the refs reviewed that fumble? We won’t know, but that was the turnover we needed and it didn’t play in our favor.

To your point, I’m not jumping on a 9 win bandwagon? It’s hard to win football games And injuries like we have had the last few years could sink our ship. We were missing 5 top receiver this bowl game. Imagine if 3 cbs get injured next year. I wouldn’t expect us to stop anyone. Back to back bowl games is a big deal for Illinois. I’m hoping for that next season. I could see us win anywhere from 5-10 games, I think 7 will be the expectation. But I’ll let other people make that call
 
I’m excited for next year. Still really worried about the DB’s but we’ll see what happens. RB will be interesting to say the least. But they really don’t matter that much.
 
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I’m excited for next year. Still really worried about the DB’s but we’ll see what happens. RB will be interesting to say the least. But they really don’t matter that much.
Hm. Neither position concerns me. Certainly not RB, which has no stand alone value. Beason is a bit of a concern but how much will depend on camp.

The real concern is the look of the offense from a design stand point. Luke Ford could get wasted pretty quickly in Rod’s system as is which would....not be good.
 
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Hm. Neither position concerns me. Certainly not RB, which has no stand alone value. Beason is a bit of a concern but how much will depend on camp.

The real concern is the look of the offense from a design stand point. Luke Ford could get wasted pretty quickly in Rod’s system as is which would....not be good.
I get your confidence. But to me the play of Martin and brown today showed me a lot of problems still exist within the secondary. And I know we were missing beason and Adams but I still think we lack difference makers. Hell even Hobbs was challenged the last couple weeks and got exposed a little. RB doesn’t bother me as much but I still lack to see a 3 down back outside of brown and maybe love.
 
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I get your confidence. But to me the play of Martin and brown today showed me a lot of problems still exist within the secondary. And I know we were missing beason and Adams but I still think we lack difference makers. Hell even Hobbs was challenged the last couple weeks and got exposed a little. RB doesn’t bother me as much but I still lack to see a 3 down back outside of brown and maybe love.
Wouldn’t worry about Quan.
 
I know we were missing beason and Adams but I still think we lack difference makers.
I'm not sure we necessarily NEED more difference makers to be successful. I think adding more depth is what this defense needs more than anything.
 
I'm not sure we necessarily NEED more difference makers to be successful. I think adding more depth is what this defense needs more than anything.
If we can get normal progression from a player of his age and developmental level, there is one specific player on that side of the ball that could take the defense from “Eh” to “Wow” very quickly. 2020 quickly.
 
If we can get normal progression from a player of his age and developmental level, there is one specific player on that side of the ball that could take the defense from “Eh” to “Wow” very quickly. 2020 quickly.
Please divulge to us. And I just mean that we saw how thin we were by the end of the year. Really think Sydney brown didn’t play all that great this year for the hype.
 
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If we can get normal progression from a player of his age and developmental level, there is one specific player on that side of the ball that could take the defense from “Eh” to “Wow” very quickly. 2020 quickly.
Calvin Avery is my guy for this IF award
 
I get your confidence. But to me the play of Martin and brown today showed me a lot of problems still exist within the secondary. And I know we were missing beason and Adams but I still think we lack difference makers. Hell even Hobbs was challenged the last couple weeks and got exposed a little. RB doesn’t bother me as much but I still lack to see a 3 down back outside of brown and maybe love.
a lot of this game from a lack of pressure. The front 4 is my only concern, right now
 
Watch the defensive breakdown on Twitter. The front four really wasn’t that bad imo. Hobbs, brown and Martin were really bad. The front four wasn’t amazing but def went the problem.
The front four did not do what is needed to beat Chase Garbers. As outlined last week, Garbers is pretty good when he’s got forward motion in the pocket or specifically moving to the right. He uses the pocket well but when you get him off his spot, his mechanics disappear and the ball goes every which way but there. Today, we very rarely moved him off his spot.

Odd. We got the A and B in the first couple drives and it worked and then we just stopped. Not sure why but we also did things in the back half that we don’t typically see from Lovie on Saturdays. A lot of Cover 3 today. That’s unusual.
 
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I get really tired of the idea our defense only survived because they lucked into turnovers, or talking about how bad they’ll be if they all the sudden stop turning people over.


Forcing turnovers CAN be your defensive identity. Forcing fumbles, tip drills, strips, batted balls, and getting 11 hats to the ball to be in position to finish those turnovers are attributes and skills of a defense. We don’t just luck into being top 5 in the country in turnovers forced. Teams that don’t finish the 50/50 balls aren’t unlucky, they aren’t hustling to the ball and being around the play.
 
The front four did not do what is needed to beat Chase Garbers. As outlined last week, Garbers is pretty good when he’s got forward motion in the pocket or specifically moving to the right. He uses the pocket well but when you get him off his spot, his mechanics disappear and the ball goes every which way but there. Today, we very rarely moved him off his spot.

Odd. We got the A and B in the first couple drives and it worked and then we just stopped. Not sure why but we also did things in the back half that we don’t typically see from Lovie on Saturdays. A lot of Cover 3 today. That’s unusual.
I need to watch the game back because I was kind of half watching half working. Was is cover 3 or man free? Why did we go away from pressure? We ran some cover two and Cal ran two perfect smash concepts. We fought hard but man it was not our best game.
 
Oswego, IL
I need to watch the game back because I was kind of half watching half working. Was is cover 3 or man free? Why did we go away from pressure? We ran some cover two and Cal ran two perfect smash concepts. We fought hard but man it was not our best game.
I didn't focus on it a lot, but when I did I saw Cover 3 quite a bit.
 
I get really tired of the idea our defense only survived because they lucked into turnovers, or talking about how bad they’ll be if they all the sudden stop turning people over.


Forcing turnovers CAN be your defensive identity. Forcing fumbles, tip drills, strips, batted balls, and getting 11 hats to the ball to be in position to finish those turnovers are attributes and skills of a defense. We don’t just luck into being top 5 in the country in turnovers forced. Teams that don’t finish the 50/50 balls aren’t unlucky, they aren’t hustling to the ball and being around the play.
Stealing bases in baseball is good, but the team that steals the most bases isn't always the most successful team. Stealing the ball in basketball is good but, again, it doesn't necessarily lead to a win.
The point is that many fans would like to see a better all-around defensive scheme and performance. Interceptions and fumble-recoveries can be an enjoyable component of that, but they should not be a stand-alone goal. If we want to win more games, the team needs to implement and execute a more dependable overall defense.
 
I need to watch the game back because I was kind of half watching half working. Was is cover 3 or man free? Why did we go away from pressure? We ran some cover two and Cal ran two perfect smash concepts. We fought hard but man it was not our best game.
Cover 3 early, free late but I also need to watch it back next week. One throw in the 3rd was definitely man free. Mixed in our Cover 4/Quarters. We did different things, Garbers simply had too much time to diagnose what was happening.

Couldn’t tell you why we got away from pressure.
 
Cover 3 early, free late but I also need to watch it back next week. One throw in the 3rd was definitely man free. Mixed in our Cover 4/Quarters. We did different things, Garbers simply had too much time to diagnose what was happening.

Couldn’t tell you why we got away from pressure.
Re-watching the first half now. Man i missed a lot. Guess I can't do two things at once. Twangers is right, Cover 3, Man Free (pressure), and I don't know how much Quarters we played through the first half. Our Corners were playing very aggressive at LOS. Seems more Cover 2 than Quarters.
 
The bowl game showed exactly what I have been posting my fear is for next year. If we don't get pressure from the front four, we will continue to get carved up on D. Worse of all, I do not see it getting fixed until the 2021 season. Unless of course we somehow land an immediate eligible pass rusher in the transfer portal. Which I cant see us getting that lucky again with the portal
 
We have seen problems in the secondary before. We missed Green and Adams. It seems like a ripple effect when they are out. DLine, needs pressure off the edges next season. Lets hope we can get a player or two or that Gay and Carney have senior years where they play like it. Gay did play better later than he did earlier.
 
Much like hoops, I’m not sure there is much if any reason for optimism given the track record at IL for the staff that is in place.

It’s hard to prognosticate on what next year will look like given injuries, the transfer portal, etc., but just judging off the performance of Lovie and Co. in their years here I expect to beat completely underwhelmed by what we see on the field.
 
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