Illinois Football Daily Bullets

Illinois Basketball Daily Bullets

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

What they're saying about the Illini heading into the Big Ten

Here's a rundown of what they're saying about the Illini heading into the Big Ten:

1. Mark Tupper (Decatur-Herald & Review) writes a glowing article about the Illini post-Syracuse. He comments on how explosive the offense was, and how Juice seems to be coming in to his own. The one thing he doesn't address-- Juice's inability to find consistency in the passing game.

2. John Supinie of the Peoria Journal-Star writes about how the Illini are officially "trolling for a bowl". He points out that a win Saturday at Indiana would mean the Illini are halfway to bowl eligibility with 3 wins. Since they'll likely be favored later in the season against Ball St., Minnesota, and Northwestern, the possiblity of 6 wins seems well within grasp. That's IF, of course, they can beat the Hoosiers on the road Saturday.

3. John Decker from writes an article titles "5 days and counting" that breaks down some numbers going into Saturday's Indiana/Illinois Match-up. He places focus on Juice Williams' 60.5% completion rate so far this year, and also makes mention of the 8 true freshman who have played so far this year for the Illini. To be sure, he also mentions the number 2-- the total number of Big Ten wins the Illini have achieved in the last four years.
He also makes mention of how Illinois is 10th in the Big Ten in turnover differential, at -4. That number is a result of the 5 turnovers they experienced vs. Mizzou. Thus, his conclusion is that Illinois isn't really turning the ball over every game a ton-- but at the same time, they're not forcing turnoves either. Contrast this with Indiana's turnover ratio of +6. Yep, the Hoosiers have forced a total of 5 interceptions and 5 fumble recoveries in the first three games. If that trend continues, it's going to be lights out for the Illini on Saturday.

Well, that's about all that's cookin' within the sports media on Tuesday before the Indiana game. So far, we're not getting much media attention beyond the usual local coverage, and the mandatory Chicago coverage. Look for things to pick up if Illinois beats Indiana. If that happens, the Illini are suddenly a true turn-around story.

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