Your First and Most Recent Illini Game

#26      
Football

16-16 overall
15-13 at Memorial Stadium
1-2 at Michigan Stadium (2008, 2010, 2012, 2022!)
0-1 at Kinnick Stadium (2019)

First game: 2007 vs. Michigan - regretably, I was there that night as a Michigan fan. But don't worry, the student section chanted that I was an "___hole" for wearing a Chad Henne jersey (I was 14). I found it hilarious. That was the only time I ever supported Michigan vs. Illinois.

Most recent game: 2021 vs. Nebraska - Also happened to be my son's first game in his life at 1 year old. Very excited to have kicked off Bielema era with a win.

Basketball

22-11 overall
18-8 at Assembly Hall
4-2 at United Center (2005, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2019 BTT)
0-1 at Welsh-Ryan Arena (2014)

First game: 2005 vs. Xavier - First game was actually at United Center. Should have been 2005 vs. Minnesota, but the weather meant it fell through. Devastated that I missed the Chief dance during halftime, as I stepped out when I thought it wasn't happening.

First game at Assembly Hall: 2006 vs. Indiana - Got to sit in the family section and high-fived Dee and Augustine as they left the court for the last time before Senior Night.

Most recent game: 2022 vs. Michigan - Almost last row lol. Good win. Pretty brutal watch.
 
#27      
Football First: 1993 comeback win against Minnesota

Football Most Recent: Last weekend in Lincoln.

Basketball First: 1995 United Center against U of California.

Basketball Most Recent: My buddy sprung for court side seats, for my 50th birthday, to watch the beloved take down Iowa and clinch the regular season title in March!
 
#28      
Firsts are tough. My folks weren’t fans so both may well be when I was a student. Most vivid football memory freshman year was the Chris White doink in the Michigan tie. For hoops 89 was a magic year and went to several games.

Who did we play when we got to #1 but Gill got hurt? Georgia Tech?

Most recent are Iowa in Kinnick last year and vs Arizona at SFC last year. Both losses.

By far biggest in-person high and low happened back to back in the same stadium. Louisville and UNC in St Louis 2005.
 
#29      
Firsts are tough. My folks weren’t fans so both may well be when I was a student. Most vivid football memory freshman year was the Chris White doink in the Michigan tie. For hoops 89 was a magic year and went to several games.

Who did we play when we got to #1 but Gill got hurt? Georgia Tech?

Most recent are Iowa in Kinnick last year and vs Arizona at SFC last year. Both losses.

By far biggest in-person high and low happened back to back in the same stadium. Louisville and UNC in St Louis 2005.
yes - 89 - #1 had lost (forget who) so we just had to win - triple OT win against GTech - we were way down 2nd half (15-18 pts?) - at end of reg and in OTs it was really loud. first game as #1 was loss vs. Minn without Gill
 
#30      

Captain 14

The Last Best Place
Football -My first game was a win over Syracuse in 1981. I won season tickets in the Shoe off a radio station in C-U, and the Illini won EVERY home game that season. Eason slung the ball all over the place that year.

Most recent - 10/15/2022, where we made Minnesota our plaything. The place was rocking and it reminded me somewhat of the fuzzy years of the mid-80s with fraternity block.

Basketball - I honestly can't remember the first OR last at AH/SFC. TBH I haven't been to that many games, and I don't think I went to any as an undergrad. I've got tickets for a half-dozen games this year though, so time for some new memories.
You're welcome...From K-104.
 
#31      
yes - 89 - #1 had lost (forget who) so we just had to win - triple OT win against GTech - we were way down 2nd half (15-18 pts?) - at end of reg and in OTs it was really loud. first game as #1 was loss vs. Minn without Gill
Outside of the tournament, that GT win is the signature for the 89 team to me. Same for Wake Forest in 2005.
 
#32      
First football game: Dad’s day in November 2004. My fiancé at the time and her family invited me to an Illinois game (their whole family are all Illini grads). I fell in love with the chief, and the game was exciting too (I believe we got an interception with a few minutes left and drove for a winning TD as time expired… or something similar).

Wife and I got married in July 2005 and we decided to buy season tickets that year. Started off 2-0 and I felt like I’d never see an Illinois loss after seeing 3 straight Illinois wins to start my Illini fandom. Well… 17 years of season tickets later… 🤦‍♂️

Last game: Minnesota this year.

The trek to Champaign was easier when we lived in Springfield. 3 1/2 hour drives from St. Louis haven’t been as fun the past four years since we’ve moved. This year has been though 🙂

I’m just glad my two kids (who have been to every game since birth sans the COVID year) finally have something to cheer about!
 
#33      
What was the first game of the ‘66 season? I knew nothing about college football when I came to Illinois. I didn’t have a sports-interested family. But yes, I went to every game my four seasons, my girlfriend went with me in ‘68 and ‘69, and after a singletons game in 2019 we ordered season tickets for 2@20 but only our cutouts went. Then we got season tickets in ‘21 and ‘22. It was actually my wife’s idea. And Gameday Spirit is an obligatory stop.

Guys, marry an Illinois Girl.
 
#35      
First: 1996 USC
Latest: 2021 Nebraska

Not bad for bookends albeit much different outcomes.

96 game walked from dorms after getting randy with a coed sI had just met night before. During game, “headed” to east main bathroom and got randy again with a member of our block.

21 game, got hit in the head with a bottle of mad dog outside of the Motel 6 in Urbana and unknowingly slept on a pillow whose pillow case was stuffed with used prophylactics. Slept on the floor and gf wasn’t happy.
 
#36      
First football game was vs. Minnesota in '63. 9 years old. Had just moved into the area. Knew absolutely nothing about the University of Illinois. Remember the Stadium, the crowd, the Chief and Illinois' uniforms (have always like navy blue). Some guy named Butkus played. He was pretty good. We won. Hooked.

Last was against North Carolina Lovie's first year.
 
#38      
My first basketball game was in 1981, a victory over Michigan. The last was against Iowa to win the big ten last year. First football game was a work tailgate in 1981 against Minnesota (I think, I know we won lol but I downed a lot of bloody mary's and screwdrivers that morning) The last game was against the goofers a couple of weeks ago.
 
#39      
First football: First game freshmen year 1976. I bought season tickets with everybody else on Carr 0 and Carr 1. But, I sat with my sister and brother-in-law for the first game against Iowa. They had moved to Urbana the year before when my BIL was working on his PhD. We were from Pittsburgh and they were Pitt grads. They bought season tickets the year before when they moved. They were so excited to tell me about the Chief. Then I got to see it for the first time. It was truly one of the greatest traditions ever. Even non-Illini loved it. What a shame that is gone. BTW, Hayden Frye is generally credited with the Hawkeyes switching their uniform to mimic the Steelers. That is not true. It had already been a discussion at Iowa in 1976. My BIL told me about it that day. Remember we were Steeler fans, so we thought it was a great honor and smart. I had season tickets from 1976 through 1990 or 1991.

Last football: Under the lights Iowa 2022.

First Basketball: Also first home game at the Assembly hall 1976. It was Henson's first recruiting class that included Levi Cobb, Neil Bresnahan, Steve Lanter, and Rob Judson. Not a bad class, especially when followed-up with Eddie Johnson and Mark Smith. I had season tickets 1976 through 1981 (yes, I was there a little longer than most. I liked to say , "I took the tourist route"). Unfortunately, the 1979 upset over MSU was during winter semesters break. I was home in Pittsburgh.

Last Basketball: At Assembly Hall it was Lou Henson's last regular season game a 1996 loss to Minnesota in OT. My 5 1/2 yo son cried. I honestly didn't think he had any idea what was going on. My wife said, "He watched every second of the game". My last BB live was the 2005 Regional Final at The Allstate Arena. My then son of 14 cried with tears of happiness. I must have been doing something right. Although, he didn't attend Illinois so... But, he is still proud to tell his friends that he was at that game
 
#40      
Mine was the Purdue vs Illini. Mark Herman and Dave Wilson both threw for what look like 1000 yardS. I think it was 1979 or 1980.
 
#42      
Mine was the Purdue vs Illini. Mark Herman and Dave Wilson both threw for what look like 1000 yardS. I think it was 1979 or 1980.
I was at that game. I remember the PA announcer saying Mark Hermann had just set the NCAA single game passing record. The next possession, he announced that Dave Wilson had just set the NCAA passing record (breaking Hermann's record).
 
#44      
First: Washington vs Illinois at Soldier Field
Recent: Loss to Rutgers in 2017

Will bring the family to a game eventually but the kids are a little too young to sit through a game right now Fter a 3 hour drive.
 
#45      

Ryllini

Lombard
I don’t remember exactly my first game at either as I was a youngster. I remember Shawn Respert as my first villain as he torched the Illini a few times at Assembly. He was also a name I used when I would play ball by myself as a guy I had to beat. Football, obviously had my heart with Rice, Hardy, and Howard.

Most recent football game was the 9-6 Iowa game.
 
#46      
First was my freshman year block I. Lost vs. Arizona, but it was a good first date to my first ltr, so a fond memory.
Certainly better than my most recent. We got beat at home by a team we paid to visit. Moved out west not to long after, so it's been a while.
 
#47      

altgeld88

Arlington, Virginia
Another fine thread idea, FOTN.

First Illini football game: Nov 2, 1974. I was eight years old. A 49-7 loss to #1 OSU in Ohio Stadium. Whaddya gonna do?

First game as an Illinois student: Nov 3, 1984. Almost 10 years to the day later. I was a freshman without season tickets. My roommate, who was a sophomore, got an extra ticket for the Minnesota game. East balcony. We crushed the burrowing rodents 48-3 on a cold, brilliant sunny day. Good fun.

Most recent football game: Sept 15, 2007. Syracuse at the Carrier Dome. That wonderful 2007 season. We thumped them 41-20. More good fun. And a lot of orange and blue!

First Illini basketball game: Jan 25, 1975. OSU in St John Arena. I was nine years old. All I remember about the Illini is that they won (66-62) and had a guy named Otho Tucker. I just looked up the roster from that season. Otho was a 6’6” guard. Our center Rick Schmidt was only 6’7”. Gene Bartow’s lone season as coach.

First game as an Illinois student: Jan 23, 1985. Again, almost ten years later to the day. A resounding 84-66 beat down of OSU (how sweet!) at the Assembly Hall.

Most recent basketball game: Jan 21, 2022. That 81-65 loss at Maryland, just four days after the epic Purdue game on MLK Day. I’ll be back at Xfinity Center in four weeks for the revenge match.

:illinois: :ah:
 
#48      
First game was a loss to Oregon state 12-10 in September 1965. Best game was beating #6 Purdue with Bob Griese 21-0 in a wind storm later that year. Can we have a repeat on Saturday?

Didn't miss a home game in my 4 1/2 years. We were 1-9 in 1968 and I figured that I needed to come back for one more semester to avoid Viet Nam and finish my degree. Surely we couldn't be as bad as 1-9! I was right...we were 0-10 in '69. Thanks Jim Valek!

Last game I went to was when my nephew was at the U of Ill. and we beat Michigan State 15-14 on 5 field goals. Not sure of the year....