Football pick 'em Week 2: Western Kentucky

Football pick 'em Week 2: Western Kentucky

Hey Mikey...I think he likes it!



Seriously, though, it's obvious that this one wasn't all peaches and cream.  Wes Lunt's arm took a bit longer to get rolling than we all would have liked, but I was impressed with how he took control of the game late.  Here's Wes after the game on his receivers.



Blog PhotoOn the flip side, less than 80 rush yards is obviously something you don't want to see, especially when you have a weapon like Josh Ferguson in your arsenal.  But I'm going to reserve judgement on that.  The same goes for the defensive effort, where neither I nor defensive coordinator Tim Banks remember many glaring mistakes.  Big picture, though, I'm not going into next week with a ton of confidence, given our opponent's performance in week one (more on that below).

To the numbers…

Blog PhotoI was pleased at the number of pickers (42) to start the year, and for all but one of you it was a successful Saturday.  Top honors this week go to Jimmy_Bat and Stephen Walko, who each missed the margin of victory by just one.  For the rest of you, the RSDTs were all over the place.  But don't fret...it's only week one.  If you need a reminder of the picking lexicon, click here.

Up next, we go from penguins to big…red…things?

Blog PhotoFor this week’s blog, I reached out to my good friend, Deadspin Hall of Famer, and big WKU fan Kige Ramsey of YouTube Sports for a scouting report.  However I didn’t get a reply, so the best we can do is a shot of Kige and Big Red.

Anyway, I watched WKU’s game last night and was impressed by the Tops’ quick and efficient offense.  The record setting numbers from QB Brandon Doughty speak for themselves (46/56, 569 yards, 6 TDs), but what was more impressive was the squad’s 100% success rate in the red zone and an average scoring drive time of 2:48 (not counting garbage time in the fourth quarter).  The Toppers have good depth at wide receiver and tight end, so Illini secondary would be wise not to make the same mistake Bowling Green did in giving the WKU receivers plenty of room to work.

Blog PhotoOutside the lines, when I realized that Jeff Brohm was the Hilltoppers head coach (another former Illini, BTW), my eyes lit up, and I got a big grin on my face.  That’s because I knew I could include in this blog what may be the best football quote of all time.  Let’s set the scene:  a young(er), scrappy Jeff Brohm is playing quarterback for the Orlando Rage of the XFL, the sorely underrated creation of WWE head man Vince McMahon.  Brohm takes a punishing hit in a game, is taken to the hospital via ambulance, and is back on the sidelines by the final whistle.  Fast forward six days, and Brohm is back under center.  But wait, Jeff, how can you come back this quick?

Conclusion:  Stone Cold Steve Austin has nothing on Jeff Brohm.

My prediction:  Illinois 45, Western Kentucky 42

Now, to paraphrase the great Macho Man Randy Savage: the spotlight goes on top of you.  Log your pick here or by e-mail by game time Saturday, and feel free to throw in some analysis or general thoughts on the current sports issues of the day.

-Tim

Coming up next time:  WKU recap, standings, & Washington predictions

[Kige gif via YouTube Sports, Brohm gif & audio via XFL 2001 on YouTube]

 

Comments

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Florida Illini wrote on September 01, 2014 at 5:09 pm

Illini 52, WKU 35

Railsplitter wrote on September 02, 2014 at 4:09 pm

Illini...34.....WKU 30

toohot4tots wrote on September 02, 2014 at 4:09 pm

Illinois 37

WKU 24

yellowjacket wrote on September 02, 2014 at 8:09 pm

Not going to be easy for the Illini 

Illini   35

WKU  28

 

FonDoc94 wrote on September 02, 2014 at 9:09 pm

W. Kentucky 51

Illini 31

smccaw_11748 wrote on September 03, 2014 at 6:09 am

Illini 34

28

Bwp 5P wrote on September 03, 2014 at 8:09 am

Illini 31

WKU 28

REDUTSC03 wrote on September 03, 2014 at 8:09 am

Illinois 38

WKU  31

Illini1973 wrote on September 03, 2014 at 8:09 am
Profile Picture

University of Chief Illiniwek - 38 1/2


Ridge Runners - 31

buckhunter2 wrote on September 03, 2014 at 8:09 am

ILLINI.   41

WKU.     31

dfritche wrote on September 03, 2014 at 8:09 am

WKU  41

UI   35

nutleyillini wrote on September 03, 2014 at 10:09 am

My heart says W but my head says L.  I think people are giving our D way too much credit for keeping an average FCS offense in check last week.  I saw even our team leaders failing to break through blocks.  It's going to be a long season. 

WKy 38

Ill 35

mvillini wrote on September 03, 2014 at 11:09 am

 

Ditto : Was somewhat dissapointed to read that coach Beckman is in charge of our corner backs. That made this pick a little easier. WKU 38, Illini 31. Sorry guys. Was that really our team running around in those white helmets ? GO ILLINI !!

 

Jimmy_Bat wrote on September 03, 2014 at 4:09 pm

Fighting Chiefs - 31

Big Red Blobs - 27

 

Extra Lines:

Lunt: 27 - 38; 308yds; 3TD, 1 INT

Ferguson - 76 Rush Yds; 54 Recv Yds

 

Pick to Click - Mikey Dudek - 6 Rec for 87yds and 2 TD's

illinifaningeorgia wrote on September 03, 2014 at 5:09 pm

First game of the year resulted in the same weaknesses that the defense exhibited all of last year:   gave up several long-gainers and had zero takeaways.  This against an average 1-AA opponent!!!  Western Kentucky is an offensive juggernaut that trampled a Bowling Green team that is probably comparable to Illinois in terms of overall talent.  WKU 49    Illinois 35.

ILLINI04 wrote on September 03, 2014 at 6:09 pm

 

ILLINI-- 35

 

WKU--31

aaeismacgychel wrote on September 03, 2014 at 6:09 pm

Well, that game against Youngstown State went about as well as everyone expected, which is to say, lousy. I did come away impressed with how Lunt performed in the 4th quarter after having a fairly awful first three. He has a good touch on the ball, but seems to struggle when it comes to telegraphing passes and his overall decision making process, so I do see him struggling against better defenses. The Illini defense also started out impressively, but similar to last year were run down and running on fumes by halftime. When one combines bad conditioning, an inability to get off the field on 3rd down, a stagnant offense, and terrible braindead penalties, it's a recipe for disaster and certainly shows signs of a team that lacks discipline and is poorly coached. But I'll stop now and save the vitriol for the inevitable losses in what will be a very long season. Soooo this week? It's an interesting question at least. Western Kentucky looked great in their opener and as for Illinois, who really knows what we'll get out of them. But this has the makings of a shoot 'em up affair, and while I don't trust the Illini defense, I think Wes Lunt will be able to go off against the Western Kentucky defense. I'm going to go with:

Illinois: 45
Western Kentucky: 38

jruss62 wrote on September 03, 2014 at 8:09 pm

ILLINI    35

WKU     33

IlliniHimey wrote on September 03, 2014 at 9:09 pm

This will be another La Tech game.

 

WKU:  52

Ill:  27

conner34 wrote on September 04, 2014 at 1:09 am

Illini 41

WKU 38

touchdown_illinois wrote on September 04, 2014 at 7:09 am

I still have hope: 

Illini 38

WKU 31

walker wrote on September 04, 2014 at 2:09 pm

Lets face it, if we can't beat a team like WKU at home, even if they do have a good airial game, then we basically don't stand any chance to win games in the B T this year.  Let's hope our secondary shows up      ILLINI  30   WKU  22        

illinibadger wrote on September 04, 2014 at 3:09 pm

UIUC 34, WKU 30

uiucfan1 wrote on September 04, 2014 at 11:09 pm

We got our scare last week...there's another scare coming, but our defensive strength is the secondary.

 

I'll go with Illinois 41 Western Kentucky 27

uiucfan1 wrote on September 04, 2014 at 11:09 pm

We got our scare last week...there's another scare coming, but our defensive strength is the secondary.

 

I'll go with Illinois 41 Western Kentucky 27

illiniearl wrote on September 04, 2014 at 11:09 pm

WKU  33

Illini  23

teachdacc wrote on September 05, 2014 at 5:09 am

Illini 45
WKU 41

illiniblueorange wrote on September 05, 2014 at 8:09 am

Illini. 35
W.k. 31

Illini-5 wrote on September 05, 2014 at 8:09 am

Illini - 32
WKU - 18

mbelcher wrote on September 05, 2014 at 9:09 am

Western Kentucky 42
Illinois. 35

EndZoneJones wrote on September 05, 2014 at 3:09 pm

WKU 42, Illini 14...WKU is an SEC farm team...  Illini played like a mediocre MAC team last week.  If WKU brings the game they had last week they will run up and down the field at will.  Illini offense was not impressive last week and needs to improve drastically to even make a game of this.  WKU is a better team right now...period...and will win the game...

robertxc1 wrote on September 05, 2014 at 8:09 pm

Illini 48

WK 24

ddub923 wrote on September 05, 2014 at 10:09 pm

WESTERN KENTUCKY          34

ILLINOIS                                  27

illinimul wrote on September 05, 2014 at 11:09 pm

Since everyone is buying into this being a shootout that clearly won't happen

Lunt took his time getting there but in the 4th the light bulb went on and he will continue lighting things up.

Bentley gets his first pick six this weekend. Love the way he's not afraid to press.

Fighting Illini 34

W. Kentucky 24

IndianaBill wrote on September 06, 2014 at 3:09 am

47 - 24 Illini

tstephens7 wrote on September 06, 2014 at 10:09 am

WKU 42 UI 35