Pregame: Illinois at Purdue, Saturday, October 26th, 11:00am CT, BTN

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Plainfield
To me getting through the rough year or so after your breakout year is key. Suppose we get to a bowl in 2019, 2020 or both. Some on here have said we’ll have an experience/talent drop off in 2021. If this is true, continuing to recruit so we can bounce back thereafter is key. Failing to recruit for the bounce back is what gets you fired. In our case we have given coaches a lot of time to rebound but recruiting fell off and they never did (Zook and Turner). Using Wisconsin as an example under Alvarez, they did recover and the rest is history.
 
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To me getting through the rough year or so after your breakout year is key. Suppose we get to a bowl in 2019, 2020 or both. Some on here have said we’ll have an experience/talent drop off in 2021. If this is true, continuing to recruit so we can bounce back thereafter is key. Failing to recruit for the bounce back is what gets you fired. In our case we have given coaches a lot of time to rebound but recruiting fell off and they never did (Zook and Turner). Using Wisconsin as an example under Alvarez, they did recover and the rest is history.
I understand the thought process in worrying about a drop off in 2021. But that is because of numbers and depth. We all know that is important. But in 2021, we are going to have some pretty talented players becoming Juniors as well. So its not like it will be a huge drop off. Especially if we can develop some of our Offensive lineman
 
I understand the thought process in worrying about a drop off in 2021. But that is because of numbers and depth. We all know that is important. But in 2021, we are going to have some pretty talented players becoming Juniors as well. So its not like it will be a huge drop off. Especially if we can develop some of our Offensive lineman
Eh, it's because of talent too. Our talent pool will be very spotty come 2021. We'll have some spots with real talent and some spots with very little...or none.

Our schedule also sucks. We swap a game in Indiana for a game in Happy Valley and we swap one of our non-conference gimmes for a road game against Virginia. Then of course, we lose the home game against Nebraska. 2021, if recruiting doesn't start to seriously uptick, could be rough.
 
Eh, it's because of talent too. Our talent pool will be very spotty come 2021. We'll have some spots with real talent and some spots with very little...or none.

Our schedule also sucks. We swap a game in Indiana for a game in Happy Valley and we swap one of our non-conference gimmes for a road game against Virginia. Then of course, we lose the home game against Nebraska. 2021, if recruiting doesn't start to seriously uptick, could be rough.
Not that I am in favor of it, but this will have to be a year where we go after 5-7 transfers if we want to be competitive. Unless there are some 4 & 5 stars jumping on because things go really well over the next two seasons then it is grad transfers or bust imo.
 
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Not that I am in favor of it, but this will have to be a year where we go after 5-7 transfers if we want to be competitive. Unless there are some 4 & 5 stars jumping on because things go really well over the next two seasons then it is grad transfers or bust imo.
I'm not gonna go back down that rabbit hole, my thoughts on transfers are well known and I don't care to go over it all again. That said, after next season we'll have what...4 starters still around come 2021? Maybe 5 if you think Derrick Smith jumps right into a starting role. We are going to be very young, very inexperienced and if recruiting doesn't take off, talent deficient in a number of areas. 4-5 transfers, while still my absolute last resort, wouldn't be the worst idea under this scenario.
 
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Eh, it's because of talent too. Our talent pool will be very spotty come 2021. We'll have some spots with real talent and some spots with very little...or none.

Our schedule also sucks. We swap a game in Indiana for a game in Happy Valley and we swap one of our non-conference gimmes for a road game against Virginia. Then of course, we lose the home game against Nebraska. 2021, if recruiting doesn't start to seriously uptick, could be rough.
We just don't agree on the talent aspect
By then
QB - room is going to be led by (we are all hoping) 3rd year Isaiah Williams and 4th year Matt Robinson and I am still not writing off Coran developing enough to be AJ Bush level
RB - I see as a weakness. Development going to be key 4th year Jakari Norwood, Sims eh, Fedanzo eh, 2nd year Love
TE - 4th year Daniel Barker and Luke Ford
WR - 3rd year Casey Washington, Edwin Carter, Dalevon Campbell and 4th year Donny Navarro
OL - 4th year Kendrick Green Verdis Brown Jordan Slaughter and Kievan Myers

DLineman! - 4th year Seth Coleman, Moses Ikpala, Randolph, Oladipo (if he is still on the team), Jamal Woods, Calvin Avery!

Ok you get the hint. I dont think I need to go further. I like that list. If we have enough depth, that offense should be able to put up points, and those lineman should be able to wreck other Olineman
 
We just don't agree on the talent aspect
By then
QB - room is going to be led by (we are all hoping) 3rd year Isaiah Williams and 4th year Matt Robinson and I am still not writing off Coran developing enough to be AJ Bush level
RB - I see as a weakness. Development going to be key 4th year Jakari Norwood, Sims eh, Fedanzo eh, 2nd year Love
TE - 4th year Daniel Barker and Luke Ford
WR - 3rd year Casey Washington, Edwin Carter, Dalevon Campbell and 4th year Donny Navarro
OL - 4th year Kendrick Green Verdis Brown Jordan Slaughter and Kievan Myers

DLineman! - 4th year Seth Coleman, Moses Ikpala, Randolph, Oladipo (if he is still on the team), Jamal Woods, Calvin Avery!

Ok you get the hint. I dont think I need to go further. I like that list. If we have enough depth, that offense should be able to put up points, and those lineman should be able to wreck other Olineman
Randolph DE, Shammond Cooper LB and DBs Beason and Witherspoon.
 
Luke Ford (I know that he’s had virtually 0 production as of yet, but a lot of times draft eligibility + measurables + 1 season of productivity = gone) and Kendrick Green might not be here by then.

We will need to win games this year and next, and knock it out of the park with secondary and RB recruiting.

Agree the D line looks nice
 
We just don't agree on the talent aspect
By then
QB - room is going to be led by (we are all hoping) 3rd year Isaiah Williams and 4th year Matt Robinson and I am still not writing off Coran developing enough to be AJ Bush level
RB - I see as a weakness. Development going to be key 4th year Jakari Norwood, Sims eh, Fedanzo eh, 2nd year Love
TE - 4th year Daniel Barker and Luke Ford
WR - 3rd year Casey Washington, Edwin Carter, Dalevon Campbell and 4th year Donny Navarro
OL - 4th year Kendrick Green Verdis Brown Jordan Slaughter and Kievan Myers

DLineman! - 4th year Seth Coleman, Moses Ikpala, Randolph, Oladipo (if he is still on the team), Jamal Woods, Calvin Avery!

Ok you get the hint. I dont think I need to go further. I like that list. If we have enough depth, that offense should be able to put up points, and those lineman should be able to wreck other Olineman
Fair enough, I think your list shows cause for very serious concern.

For starters, it's filled with kids that either A: Don't have high ceilings, in my view (Norwood, Sims, Campbell, Carter) or B: Can't get on the field now for a roster that while more talented than anything we've had in a while, is still so-so (Verdis Brown chief among them but also include Avery and Oladipo). You've also listed essentially every player we currently have with 2021 eligibility without mentioning the potential of losing some of these names to the transfer market. That market is a two way street. I think we lost 8 guys last year, does that sound right? We have to factor this in, especially for the QB room (If we do sign either Dixon or Spann or both, that room won't be big enough for everyone. Someone will likely transfer) but I guess my real concern above all else is simple: Your list above? It's only 20 names long. Our talent pool is so shallow, it leaves us far more susceptible to having a couple of injuries derail entire positional groups or even outright units. We're already hearing that complaint now. "Man, not having Bobby killed us. Not having Marquez killed us. Not having Betiku will kill us". That's not because we're short on numbers, we have guys to play in their absence. What we don't have are GOOD guys to play in their absence. If/when injuries occur we will be forced to throw far lesser talents out there and live with the results, however negative they may be, because we won't have any other choice. That's how your list reads to me.

Still see guys with real potential. One kid I see big things in store for that doesn't get much discussion here is Tariq Barnes, I think he's got a very bright future. It's just scary how short our list of names is.

EDIT: I excluded discussing offensive line for a specific reason, projecting them is extremely difficult if not impossible. For the offensive front, more than any other position in football, the recruiting analysis pre-college enrollment is not something I put a tremendous amount of stock into.
 
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Geneseo, IL
While I'm extremely happy for the players, coaches, and fans about the upset win last Saturday, I have this bad feeling that Purdue is going to drub the Illini this week. I think it's highly possible that heavily-favored teams come into Memorial Stadium and don't exert maximum mental effort (which then manifests into physical mistakes) which I think possibly happened the last two games against Michigan and Wisconsin. When you look at how Illinois won the game last week with less than 20 minutes of possession time and the Badgers failing so many times in the red zone, it's not a repeatable formula for success. I'm afraid that Purdue will pass the ball at will against the Illini and win fairly easily. I hope I'm wrong but until Illini can show some consistency I'm going to be a doubter.
 
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Decent chance of rain Saturday... I'm thinking a nasty, rainy day can't hurt our chances.
Read that the forecast there is calling for a 90% chance of "heavy rain". Not sure what classifies as "heavy rain" but that definitely won't hurt our chances. That's really good for us, theoretically speaking of course.
 
While I'm extremely happy for the players, coaches, and fans about the upset win last Saturday, I have this bad feeling that Purdue is going to drub the Illini this week. I think it's highly possible that heavily-favored teams come into Memorial Stadium and don't exert maximum mental effort (which then manifests into physical mistakes) which I think possibly happened the last two games against Michigan and Wisconsin. When you look at how Illinois won the game last week with less than 20 minutes of possession time and the Badgers failing so many times in the red zone, it's not a repeatable formula for success. I'm afraid that Purdue will pass the ball at will against the Illini and win fairly easily. I hope I'm wrong but until Illini can show some consistency I'm going to be a doubter.
I get where you're coming from and I'm nervous because of last year but the general consensus was that Wisconsin should've whooped us even with a little sleepwalking...

But we won. The team is much more motivated now There's a chance
 
Fair enough, I think your list shows cause for very serious concern.

For starters, it's filled with kids that either A: Don't have high ceilings, in my view (Norwood, Sims, Campbell, Carter) or B: Can't get on the field now for a roster that while more talented than anything we've had in a while, is still so-so (Verdis Brown chief among them but also include Avery and Oladipo). You've also listed essentially every player we currently have with 2021 eligibility without mentioning the potential of losing some of these names to the transfer market. That market is a two way street. I think we lost 8 guys last year, does that sound right? We have to factor this in, especially for the QB room (If we do sign either Dixon or Spann or both, that room won't be big enough for everyone. Someone will likely transfer) but I guess my real concern above all else is simple: Your list above? It's only 20 names long. Our talent pool is so shallow, it leaves us far more susceptible to having a couple of injuries derail entire positional groups or even outright units. We're already hearing that complaint now. "Man, not having Bobby killed us. Not having Marquez killed us. Not having Betiku will kill us". That's not because we're short on numbers, we have guys to play in their absence. What we don't have are GOOD guys to play in their absence. If/when injuries occur we will be forced to throw far lesser talents out there and live with the results, however negative they may be, because we won't have any other choice. That's how your list reads to me.

Still see guys with real potential. One kid I see big things in store for that doesn't get much discussion here is Tariq Barnes, I think he's got a very bright future. It's just scary how short our list of names is.

EDIT: I excluded discussing offensive line for a specific reason, projecting them is extremely difficult if not impossible. For the offensive front, more than any other position in football, the recruiting analysis pre-college enrollment is not something I put a tremendous amount of stock into.
I agree, depth looks like a major risk. I would be shocked if at least a handful of those guys do not hit their ceiling. We do not need them all to become NFL stars, just B1G capable players, which I do not think is that outlandish.
I also want to point out that we shouldn't have to worry about losing 3 out of our best 5 players do to injury every year either, which we are dealing with currently. We will have injuries, but they have hit the top of the depth chart hard this year.
 
South Carolina
While I'm extremely happy for the players, coaches, and fans about the upset win last Saturday, I have this bad feeling that Purdue is going to drub the Illini this week. I think it's highly possible that heavily-favored teams come into Memorial Stadium and don't exert maximum mental effort (which then manifests into physical mistakes) which I think possibly happened the last two games against Michigan and Wisconsin. When you look at how Illinois won the game last week with less than 20 minutes of possession time and the Badgers failing so many times in the red zone, it's not a repeatable formula for success. I'm afraid that Purdue will pass the ball at will against the Illini and win fairly easily. I hope I'm wrong but until Illini can show some consistency I'm going to be a doubter.
Illinois also has a touchdown wiped out by a silly penalty and missed a very makable field goal. It's not like all the missed opportunities were by Wisconsin. Illinois should have won by more and if both teams cleaned a few things up, Illinois still wins
 
Fair enough, I think your list shows cause for very serious concern.

For starters, it's filled with kids that either A: Don't have high ceilings, in my view (Norwood, Sims, Campbell, Carter) or B: Can't get on the field now for a roster that while more talented than anything we've had in a while, is still so-so (Verdis Brown chief among them but also include Avery and Oladipo). You've also listed essentially every player we currently have with 2021 eligibility without mentioning the potential of losing some of these names to the transfer market. That market is a two way street. I think we lost 8 guys last year, does that sound right? We have to factor this in, especially for the QB room (If we do sign either Dixon or Spann or both, that room won't be big enough for everyone. Someone will likely transfer) but I guess my real concern above all else is simple: Your list above? It's only 20 names long. Our talent pool is so shallow, it leaves us far more susceptible to having a couple of injuries derail entire positional groups or even outright units. We're already hearing that complaint now. "Man, not having Bobby killed us. Not having Marquez killed us. Not having Betiku will kill us". That's not because we're short on numbers, we have guys to play in their absence. What we don't have are GOOD guys to play in their absence. If/when injuries occur we will be forced to throw far lesser talents out there and live with the results, however negative they may be, because we won't have any other choice. That's how your list reads to me.

Still see guys with real potential. One kid I see big things in store for that doesn't get much discussion here is Tariq Barnes, I think he's got a very bright future. It's just scary how short our list of names is.

EDIT: I excluded discussing offensive line for a specific reason, projecting them is extremely difficult if not impossible. For the offensive front, more than any other position in football, the recruiting analysis pre-college enrollment is not something I put a tremendous amount of stock into.

I think some fo 2021 can be filled out with transfers. It has been shown the NCAA is really relaxing their standards for this (poor Luke Ford) and while it is ideal to develop freshman that can grow in the system and step up and play. We are the type of program that may have to use transfers to hold us through a light year where some young guys aren't quite ready to step up but senior leadership has moved on. Either way, I don't see us having too dramatic of a down year in 2021. I see us hopefully hovering around that 6-6 mark for the next few years while we build identity and recruiting stability.
 
I agree, depth looks like a major risk. I would be shocked if at least a handful of those guys do not hit their ceiling. We do not need them all to become NFL stars, just B1G capable players, which I do not think is that outlandish.
I also want to point out that we shouldn't have to worry about losing 3 out of our best 5 players do to injury every year either, which we are dealing with currently. We will have injuries, but they have hit the top of the depth chart hard this year.
That's fair and I'd be inclined to agree. I do think we have some exciting talent, moreso than at any point in recent 5 year memory. Beason coming off an injury is a huge question mark (Anyone who denies this is not credible) but you still love what he represents as a player. Shammond, Barnes, I think Seth Coleman can be a big time kid off the edge if he can grow into the body a little more. Okpala oozes talent, albeit extremely raw talent. Defensively we have a couple pieces. Offensively, it's all about the Trinity group. Isaiah, Reggie (Should get a 4th star, he doesn't look any different to me on tape than the kid Hubbard from the Valley and he's got 4 stars from 247) and Frenchie. Love Casey Washington too, LOVE. Cumby will be a player if Rod will use him correctly. That unit has a couple pieces. My point though, again, is that we're only talking a couple pieces each way. That's not enough.

Eh. We've been hit to the extreme only to a certain extent. Our OL is completely intact (Knock on wood). I don't think a starting OL has missed a single snap this season due to injury, how often does that happen? In that regard, one could argue we've been fairly lucky. With injuries, I think all bets must remain off.
 
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I think some fo 2021 can be filled out with transfers. It has been shown the NCAA is really relaxing their standards for this (poor Luke Ford) and while it is ideal to develop freshman that can grow in the system and step up and play. We are the type of program that may have to use transfers to hold us through a light year where some young guys aren't quite ready to step up but senior leadership has moved on. Either way, I don't see us having too dramatic of a down year in 2021. I see us hopefully hovering around that 6-6 mark for the next few years while we build identity and recruiting stability.
I will relent and agree that this isn't the worst idea in regards to 2021. Taking on 5-7 transfers this offseason would be godawful horrific. 2021? Eh, might not be a bad idea.

With an inexperienced roster and a far less favorable schedule, 2021 is probably a 5-6 win best case with a build into 2022 as things stand today (Obviously, this far out, a lot change for the better). A poster a while back declared next year a 10 win team and the 2021 squad a potential 8 win team. That's where you lose me.
 
That's fair and I'd be inclined to agree. I do think we have some exciting talent, moreso than at any point in recent 5 year memory. Beason coming off an injury is a huge question mark (Anyone who denies this is not credible) but you still love what he represents as a player. Shammond, Barnes, I think Seth Coleman can be a big time kid off the edge if he can grow into the body a little more. Okpala oozes talent, albeit extremely raw talent. Defensively we have a couple pieces. Offensively, it's all about the Trinity group. Isaiah, Reggie (Should get a 4th star, he doesn't look any different to me on tape than the kid Hubbard from the Valley and he's got 4 stars from 247) and Frenchie. Love Casey Washington too, LOVE. Cumby will be a player if Rod will use him correctly. That unit has a couple pieces. My point though, again, is that we're only talking a couple pieces each way. That's not enough.

Eh. We've been hit to the extreme only to a certain extent. Our OL is completely intact (Knock on wood). I don't think a starting OL has missed a single snap this season due to injury, how often does that happen? In that regard, one could argue we've been fairly lucky. With injuries, I think all bets must remain off.
This isn't 1968, players come off of ACL injuries all the time and perform just as well as they did prior to the injury. It is a question mark, but hardly huge. Your statement to the contrary indicates a lack of understanding of the medical involved. Your statement that anyone disagreeing with you isn't credible without any basis, is not fact, as the Dude in the Big Lebowski said, "It's just like, your opinion, man."
 
This isn't 1968, players come off of ACL injuries all the time and perform just as well as they did prior to the injury. It is a question mark, but hardly huge. Your statement to the contrary indicates a lack of understanding of the medical involved. Your statement that anyone disagreeing with you isn't credible without any basis, is not fact, as the Dude in the Big Lebowski said, "It's just like, your opinion, man."
I am, unfortunately, aware of the medical. My wife played collegiate athletics and tore her ACL and MCL. It's a tough road back. And yes, players do get back to peak form at relatively encouraging rates. They also don't get back to peak form in relatively discouraging rates. Unless you have some sort of metric to back up what is being claimed, my comment stands. A comment, by the by, that has nothing to do with disagreeing with me. It's a comment relating to an assumption, which is never going to end well for anyone, myself included (Which is why, if you notice, I didn't say Marquez is a lost cause who will never come back from this setback. I merely called it a "huge question mark". Large difference).

Something else to consider: Do we even know what Beason's injury is/was? We're all just assuming it was an ACL and nothing more, unless I missed something somewhere.
 
I have no medical knowledge at all, but as an Illini fan I am more worried about a tendency for these things to be recurring, as we have seen with Dudek and Esptein. Maybe he comes back, but is there a congenital weakness in the joint that never lets him get to his potential. Again, probably just a paranoid Illini fan.
 
A simple request, if you will. When making a forecast of Saturday's game, could you remind us of your prediction of the Wisconsin game? Mine, btw, was either we get crushed...or we win by a small margin, nothing in between, with the likelihood of the latter rather slim. That said, slim won, and so did the Illini.
 
To me getting through the rough year or so after your breakout year is key. Suppose we get to a bowl in 2019, 2020 or both. Some on here have said we’ll have an experience/talent drop off in 2021. If this is true, continuing to recruit so we can bounce back thereafter is key. Failing to recruit for the bounce back is what gets you fired. In our case we have given coaches a lot of time to rebound but recruiting fell off and they never did (Zook and Turner). Using Wisconsin as an example under Alvarez, they did recover and the rest is history.
Didn't Wisconsin start and sustain its turnaround by consistently landing top in-state recruits? The Sconnies are much more unified under the Sconnie flag. Us Illini are pretty fractured. State pride overall is lacking. People take great civic pride in Chicago, but to many of us in the Chicagoland area, anything south of 80 may as well be Kentucky. When the metro area that comprises 70%+ of your state's population doesn't "identify" with people (or flagship university) outside of its empire, it's hard to draw top in-state athletes.

Not to get off topic, but I wonder how different our image would be if we were an hour or so closer to Chicago. Maybe somewhere along the Illinois or Fox Rivers. Coaches and parents in Chicagoland know Champaign is a top notch school, but it's still perceived to be deep in the boonies/a backwater. That's another thing - Wisconsin's campus is geographically interesting whereas Champaign is flat as a pancake and completely landlocked. Not saying these aren't things we can't overcome, but it's a different situation than Wisconsin.
 
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