Bob Asmussen

Bob Asmussen

Game Day Q&A: 'I can get six fast'

Growing up here, who was your favorite local player at Illinois?

Mikel Leshoure. He was just a dog. He was a beast. He ran the ball hard and was from the same high school. He did a lot of good things out here. He led us to a big-time bowl game win.

Bush to start against Minnesota

CHAMPAIGN — There is no more mystery about the Illinois starting quarterback on Saturday afternoon against Minnesota: graduate transfer AJ Bush Jr. gets the call.

Illinois coach Lovie Smith spilled the beans at Friday’s Illini Quarterback Club luncheon at Champaign Suites.

“I guess I’m telling an awful lot,” Smith told the crowd of about 200. “Both guys will be available.”

Top of the Morning, Nov. 2, 2018

Six gamers will represent the University of Illinois at the Intel Extreme Masters on Nov. 11. The 16-team tournament will be held at Chicago's Wintrust Arena.

The teams will compete in "Counter-Strike: Global Offensive," a multiplayer first-person-shooter video game. It is the fourth game in the "Counter Strike" series and was released on multiple platforms.

Asmussen | Let's get ready to rumble

Sports I prefer outdoors: Baseball (though rain delays are a pain), football (no Ice Bowl in a dome), hockey (Winter Classic a genius move by the NHL).

So, why not wrestling? Au naturel.

Illinois plans to give it a try Saturday afternoon, weather permitting. And the forecast looks very permissible. Highs in the low 50s at 12:30 p.m. with a light breeze.

And no rain.

Asmussen | As Nickerson moves on, UI changes up its approach

Say what you want about the Illinois defense — most of it bad — but there is a very human side to Hardy Nickerson's unexpected departure as coordinator.

We got to know the longtime NFL linebacker as a person — most of it good.

Friendly, honest and decent. You didn't see him ranting and raving at his players. I'm not sure I ever heard him curse.

Oct. 28 Asmussen Top 25

Illinois football beat writer Bob Asmussen is a voting member of The Associated Press Top 25 panel. Here is this week's ballot:



Asmussen | Another blowout loss puts Illini's postseason dreams on life support

My trusty Samsung Note 3 (yes, it is old, like me) pings every time I get a text message. It mimics the opening bell of a boxing match.

The pings started coming at about 3 p.m., Saturday. At first, one every 10 minutes or so. Then, more frequent. Finally, to the point where I felt like I was at the Golden Gloves during a "Rocky" movie.

Illini Report Card: at Maryland, Oct. 27, 2018

Player of the game

Maryland running back Javon Leake

Final word: 'It's a business trip ... keep it simple'

COLLEGE PARK, Md. — When Illinois had an offensive coordinator opening after last season, one of the rumored names was Matt Canada.

He had been fired by LSU and was looking for his next opportunity.

"I looked at every good, available coordinator," Illinois coach Lovie Smith said. "Of course, Matt was one of them."

Game day Q&A: 'I might be a coach'

He grew up 25 miles from the Maryland campus in Upper Marlboro, Md. Today, Reggie Corbin gets to play a home game when the Illini visit the Terrapins in College Park. Beat writer Bob Asmussen sat down with the junior tailback earlier this week:

How many Maryland football games have you been to?