Pregame: Illinois at Michigan State, Saturday, November 9th, 2:30pm CT, FS1

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#51
I wish I knew! I think Lovie's defense lends itself to be more effective against more traditional offenses, especially now that we've been playing a 4-3 most of the time. The only real spread offense we've played recently was on a flooded field with a backup QB and multiple injuries... With that said, I don't think(?) we would perform as poorly if we replayed those teams. Or at least I'm pretty sure? I do think we have clearly improved over the year, and like BZuppke said, it's likely a combination of the 2 factors. Iowa beat us 63-0 last year and they run a more traditional offense, so clearly we have improved.
I think it's pretty plausible to expect some ongoing struggles against spread offenses going forward unless Lovie is willing to make some adjustments, but I think for the time being he's probably earned the benefit of the doubt until we face them again. Probably won't be until next year unless we face one in a bowl game.
A spread was not even remotely the issue. The issue was personnel.
 
#52
A spread was not even remotely the issue. The issue was personnel.
If you're talking about DB personnel, I 100% agree. We were horrible early, but it looks like after some changes we have that sorted out. Teams that spread us out to test our LBs in coverage and have a mobile QB present challenges for us though. Our front 7, which for the most part has been the same rotation all year, struggled mightily against those offenses. We basically whiffed on every QB option, and our LBs could not keep up in coverage.
 
#53
Teams that spread us out to test our LBs in coverage and have a mobile QB present challenges for us though.
That’s not isolated to the spread however which is what we’re discussing, whether or not our issues with manifest themselves against another spread offense. Rutgers ran two basic run gap plays yesterday, plays found in every playbook in America that beat Jake to the gap and got around him for large chunks of yards. This has nothing to do with the spread. This is merely the difference between having kids with lower ceiling athletic profiles vs. kids with Shammond Cooper esque athletic profiles. You don’t solve that problem with a scheme adjustment in the meeting room on Wednesday and Thursday, you solve that in recruiting.

This defense is no more susceptible to a spread than any other and facing that defense is not our kryptonite. Our kryptonite is that if we suffer an injury in the back half, we have to turn to Quan Martin or Kerby Joseph (Quan alone allowed over 140 passing yards to Mike Glass and EMU). Stanley Green and Tony Adams (Now starting at a position that suits him) were both out against EMU. That’s pretty much the story of that football game.
 
#54
Now, we've seen two different teams this year. Team A(2-4) and team B(3-0). What is our run vs pass ratio the last three weeks vs prior and what are our defensive statistics the last three weeks vs prior?

I'm trying to figure out how this team let up 40+ (and 600 yards)to Nebraska and how they lost to EMU and went down to the wire vs UCONN.

You can take the current season stats(and rankings) and throw them out the window if you believe the team you've seen these last three weeks is the product you'll see going forward.

Who would you best comp this team to(assuming this current play is who we are)?
To be honest, we are probably somewhere in between A and B. Nebraska and EMU were two games we absolutely should have won.

Let’s also be honest, we caught lightning in a bottle vs. Wisconsin. That game goes our way probably 1 out of 10 times but we took it and good for us. Then we played Purdue in conditions that heavily favored us and Rutgers is the worst P5 team in the country. So three wins yes but still leaves me feeling uncertain about where we are really at.

Now, to be fair, we could have totally Illinoised all three of those games and didn’t, so we took care of business and that shows possibly turning a corner.

The next two games will tell us more. Looking forward to it.
 
#55
... to be fair, we could have totally Illinoised all three of those games and didn’t, so we took care of business and that shows possibly turning a corner.
This is what I keep telling myself. While we certainly have been “lucky” the last three weeks (albeit luck we still had to take advantage of), we didn’t “Illinois” it up. But I also have to remind myself that while Lovie is certainly instrumental in this minor turn we’ve made, he’s also been at the helm for many Illinois eff-ups...

I’m starting to jump back in the Lovie bandwagon, but I want to see these next two games before fully getting back on board.
 
#56
I think we come back to reality and lose this one by 2 touchdowns. But get recharged during the bye week and beat Iowa and NW.

I would also love to see Iowa win their next 2 games (Wisconsin and Minny). It would be so fun to ruin their chance at a B1G championship game.
 
#57
Oswego, IL
I think we come back to reality and lose this one by 2 touchdowns. But get recharged during the bye week and beat Iowa and NW.

I would also love to see Iowa win their next 2 games (Wisconsin and Minny). It would be so fun to ruin their chance at a B1G championship game.
I agree that we might now win. But I think "reality" is closer to a touchdown, and maybe less.
 
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#58
I'm expecting to lose the next two tough games on the road, and then defeat Northwestern.

I hope I'm wrong about the first part...
 
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#59
I think we come back to reality and lose this one by 2 touchdowns. But get recharged during the bye week and beat Iowa and NW.

I would also love to see Iowa win their next 2 games (Wisconsin and Minny). It would be so fun to ruin their chance at a B1G championship game.
It wouldn’t necessarily ruin it - Iowa would still be the champion in that scenario if Minnesota lost to Penn State and Wisconsin.
 
#60
I don't see MSU favored by 9.5. Likely the over under is 9.5. First team to 10 wins!

GO ILLINI!
 
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#61
Plainfield
As to luck - it’s part of every game and season. When a team wins, they’ve had some good luck too.
 
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#66
.4 percent is still in it kids
Virginia
Rodney Dangerfield had a response for things like this...
Nice - I'd rather the team start off pissed, and MSU assume they can take us easy. If I an opposing team, I could see the last two games we've won not being all that special. Lets hope they are looking past us.
 
#67
Nice - I'd rather the team start off pissed, and MSU assume they can take us easy. If I an opposing team, I could see the last two games we've won not being all that special. Lets hope they are looking past us.
While certainly possible, it’s hard to see that happening this week. MSU has to scratch and claw and fight to the death to get to 6. They’ll want this one as bad as we do.
 
#68
.4 percent is still in it kids
Virginia
While certainly possible, it’s hard to see that happening this week. MSU has to scratch and claw and fight to the death to get to 6. They’ll want this one as bad as we do.
True, not saying they aren't motivated, just that i am not sure we're getting any respect as of yet and I am hoping they come out against us like we did against Rutgers. We had the motivation, just did not come out thinking Rutgers would be much of a fight.
 
#70
True, not saying they aren't motivated, just that i am not sure we're getting any respect as of yet and I am hoping they come out against us like we did against Rutgers. We had the motivation, just did not come out thinking Rutgers would be much of a fight.
I agree, let’s hope they doubt us.

Pretty sure it was RamRod who mentioned this yesterday but we absolutely need a fast start, crucial to us winning this thing.
 
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#73
So I’ve heard msu is bad on offense. Haven’t seen them play at all. What are they so bad at? What is/are their strength(s)?
 
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#75
So I’ve heard msu is bad on offense. Haven’t seen them play at all. What are they so bad at? What is/are their strength(s)?
Only watched the ASU game but the QB is a big problem.

They got a WR from Nimitz in Houston we watched quite a bit, Stewart that is really good but he went down against PSU and never returned. Don’t know his status but if he can’t play, that’s a major shot to their offense. He’s gonna play on Sunday’s.
 
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