Tate: What's the fuss, Gus?

You keep telling me the UI is a “basketball school.”

OK. That’s undoubtedly true. But explain the past week. John Groce’s team is on a thrill-a-minute roll, winning eight straight and denting the Top 25, and Gus Phan (i.e., Illini Nation) is drowning himself in a head-spinning reaction to more football failures.

Even my conversations before, during and after Wednesday’s game reflected football concerns.

OK, Gus, it’s obvious you’re not thrilled with Tim Beckman. You built up a lot of outrage watching his team flounder, and you want a do-over. But get real. Relieving Beckman has never been a consideration by UI decision-makers.

After Saturday’s 50-14 debacle at Northwestern, Gus let himself be misled by the sight of college coaches being dumped from coast to coast, including one (Ellis Johnson at Southern Mississippi) who was fired after a single disastrous season.

And Gus was egged on by unsubstantiated and erroneous speculation from a Chicago radio station that Beckman might be replaced. This is just the latest case of Mike Thomas being misrepresented. But rumors grow over the airwaves, and this one was apparently so believable that WGN-TV’s Dan Roan and others were checking it out for verification.

The rumors flew, in part because so many people wanted to believe them. Never have so many otherwise-reasonable people asked the question in so many ways when they already knew the answer.

Repeat after me: Illinois is not going to relieve a coach after one year.

Bottom of the barrel

Beckman’s program has enough troubles without the extra weight of Doubting Thomases.

It is an epidemic that must run its course. Gus Phan’s friends at church are losing faith, his working associates are at a loss, his luncheon companions are poised to jump, the members at service clubs and Illini meetings express uncertainty about buying season tickets, and buddies at his watering hole have solutions you wouldn’t believe.

If evening exchanges could be monitored, you’d think Beckman had committed a felony.

That’s not everyone, of course, but it’s clearly a landslide majority ... almost like the rumblings last year when Ron Zook and Bruce Weber, whose time had run out, were under the guillotine.

When Thomas spoke out Tuesday confirming that Beckman will continue in the second year of his five-year contract, a Gus Phan ringleader challenged: “Why didn’t you ask if that is unequivocal?”

Like, I don’t believe it! Stating it once isn’t conclusive. Make it multiple and unequivocal. Sign an oath. Where is Grover Norquist when you need him?

Words of wisdom

Personally, I’m always depressed when the community mood is so despairing. It’s worse today than when Chief Illiniwek was removed. But suffering has become second nature here. If another gridiron Dust Bowl is coming, we know how to cover our heads.

We’re supplied with eyelids. We close them and see the Chief dancing. And we close them to avoid watching Northwestern score another touchdown.

My recent conversations with former UI coaches Mike White, Greg McMahon and Vic Koenning had the tone of friends at a wake. Emails received from former players reveal a touch of desperation. This isn’t my imagination. Talk shows on WDWS this week repeatedly wound back to one issue: The hole is deep and getting deeper.

How can the Illini defense improve when the line and secondary will be severely weakened by departures? What is there to make anyone believe the anemic offense will improve? If Zook and Tim Salem, both special teams experts, couldn’t make it work, who can?

And now the speculation will heighten regarding the staff. Head trainer Scott Brooks already is gone. One source said Brooks wanted more normal working hours. Another source said he couldn’t work with Beckman. Take your choice. Clearly, the mood inside the staff is anything but joyous.

So, Gus, forge ahead. We’ve seen Illinois rise from the ashes before. Barry Alvarez started 1-10 at Wisconsin. For the time being, remember: Illinois is a basketball school.

It happens everywhere

We tend to view developments elsewhere in our own context. Thus did I peruse the words of Paul Klee, whose new assignment included coverage of Colorado’s firing of coach Jon Embree.

Like Illinois, Colorado is underachieving. Embree was fired two years after Boise State’s Dan Hawkins failed. Together, they’ve authored seven straight losing seasons. Klee has followed closely his home area (Denver), and he began with a warning to Air Force coach Troy Calhoun in case his phone rings:

“Do not pass Monument. Do not collect $2 million. Do not go near Folsom Field — unless the Falcons need a win. After hearing what I heard Monday, it (the Colorado situation) is worse than we thought.”

See, other folks have problems too. Going on, Klee wrote:

“CU hosted a news conference to explain the coaching change. A therapy session broke out. Wish you could’ve been there. The 45-minute ordeal inside Dal Ward Athletic Center was fantastical, almost too bizarre to be true. This was football ‘Argo.’ ”

Going on, Klee informed:

“A critic laid out the extensive list of the problems facing CU football. That critic was the athletic director (Mike Bohn). It’s rough when anonymous posters blast a coach on the Internet, or when media slam the state of the football program. But when the AD is the one lowering the boom?

“Said Bohn: ‘We were exposed in this league. We have challenges with some of our younger players in terms of their academic progress.’

“The worst thing CU did wasn’t firing a coach,” wrote Klee. “It was broadcasting the news conference on Pac-12 Network so the football world could witness the slow burn.”

Of Embree, whose teams went 4-21, Klee said: “He was in so far over his head that he couldn’t see Flagstaff Mountain.”

Then he pointed out that the problem at CU goes way above the football coach. And so it is at troubled institutions like Purdue, Kentucky, California, North Carolina State and, yes... Illinois.

All face “headwinds” that never seem to blow themselves out, regardless of who is in control.

Loren Tate writes for The News-Gazette. He can be reached at ltate@news-gazette.com.

Categories (3):Illini Sports, Football, Sports

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geriatricillini wrote on November 30, 2012 at 8:11 am

I don't read much national stuff about us. I find the three "local" newpaper sites...Decatur. Springfield and the News-Gazette give me all the info I need about us sportswise. I see a lot of calling for Beckman to be canned, but I have yet to see any posting that didn't assume that he would be back next year. They don't like it, but are savvy enough to know he ain't leaving here after one year. They're not dumb ya know. My fellow Illini fans just want to win, Loren. It's not that they "hate" Tim Beckman, they hate the damn results this year and who can blame them after this disaster of a season? Personally, I knew he'd be back even if we went 0-12...too expensive to pay him off after one year in my view. But, you CAN fire a coach after one season and I understood that from day one. But Thomas won't do it...period. I haven't made up my mind about how much rope Thomas will give Beckman after this season...I have no idea, but I am fairly sure the clock started right after the final gun up in Evanston last week end. How much time is on that clock is up for debate. But Tim Beckman needs to show all of us that he knows how to straighten out this mess as much as possible as soon as possible or his time here will be a short one. Do I think he can do it? Ask me next November after game #12. It's all on him right now.

tb wrote on November 30, 2012 at 9:11 am

 Loren we are just long time fans who are worn out. We listen to the AD and Coach spin. We listen to them tell us how good they are going to be. We even hear you tell us we are never going to be any good cause we never have been. All the while we can't figure it out it. Makes no sense to us. The home of Red Grange and Dick Butkus should be better. A state with Chicago in it ought to be able to field a decent team every year.  We just do not get it. How can Northwestern be that much better than us? We l used to lean on the myth that we can't get the best players because we can't get them into school.  We are ranked behind 4 other schools in the Big Ten and 59 others outside of the conference. Stanford wins. We just do not get it. We just can't believe our defense was that bad. It had to be the coaching we had almost everyone back. Please Loren help us cause we just do not understand why we can not win at Illinois.

blmillini wrote on November 30, 2012 at 10:11 am

Good article.  Illinois is a football wasteland and has been for years.  I don't personally understand why there is such a fuss over Beckman when we have been terrible for 20 years.  Yes, I know we threw in a couple of inexplicable years where we did quite well but a single year every decade followed by 9 other years of losing more games than we win in the Big 10 is far from any measure of success.  Consider for a moment that those 20 years are the years under Ron Guenther's watch.  He was and is the primary reason for the demise of Illinois football.  Don't you think it is time to give the new guy a little bit of slack?  You don't undo 20 years of incompetence in one football season.

walker wrote on November 30, 2012 at 10:11 am

The problem is not "Gus making a big fuss" or in other words, our fandom just not being unwilling to accept the fact that we are just a BB school and can never (or have never) been consistently good in FB.  I remember the change in the 80's, when the AD hit a home run by bringing in M White, who completely changed everything from our recruiting priorities, style of play, etc.  We were patient at first because there was an air of expectancy that things were pointing in a positive direction. As we began to win, "Gus Phan" filled the seats IMMEDIATELY !  Positive media attention followed along as did Chicago area recruits.


Even when Zook came in there was some pop & excitement because of the recruits he was able to land initially.  I believe that our pious AD is the guy who has screwed things by now setting our FB program up for new levels of extended failure.


Thomas clearly needed to hit a home run with this hire and we ended up with a situation where the batter was called out looking at three straight pitches down the middle. Seems to me that M T should have had a 95% certainty that he could get his 1st or 2nd choice before he fired Zook.


Again Beckman had no name recognition or "buzz" coming to this program and so his only chance to attract recruits was maintain the strong defensive play that he inherited which screamed to do whatever it took to keep Vic K, even naming him Ass't Head Coach.  Maybe it's all hindsight now, but that would have provided the best chance for overall success this year.  In other words, MT  & his man TB have brought most of this on themselves and Gus has a right to fuss !


 


 


 

Moonpie wrote on November 30, 2012 at 10:11 am

Gawd, this is ugly Oracle Tate stuff. Classic talking down to fans.He can't stand fans. And he can't keep his tea party roots and that stereotypical Injun out of it.


But other than, he's right that Beckman won't be fired after a year. That would be silly and unfair. But a bad season next time will truly warm up his seat.

rmitchell wrote on November 30, 2012 at 11:11 am

re: 'stereotypical injun'

nothing will get the old guard madder quicker than a perjorative comment about the old mascot.

i used to refer to him as 'the dancin' injun', but obviously that no longer applies.

 

illinihimeyiswhiney wrote on November 30, 2012 at 1:11 pm

 

Lord Moonpie, What beautifully articulate Chewbacca Moonpie stuff! Classic expansion on the fact that he and Tate can't help but be two peas in a pod beating the tea party drum. I bet all the rest of you feel terrible that Moonpie said I could join him in his ignorance but the rest of you must simply read from afar and hope that one day you can be just as far right tea party baby in a diaper as he and Tate, and now me by the grace of Moonie! Fascinating on how it is that old man Tate's roots are in the Tea Party with moonpie... especially since the tea party didn’t exist until circa 2008-2010 depending on when you want to really say they became a publicly known group of people! Naturally Moonpie belongs there, as the creator of creators, the tea party existed in his head long before the earth was created by the god moon pie created. The sheer wonder of the world that all these things are possible!

And that stereotypical Indian, to whom we will refer to in the politically correct way of "indium" what's he doing!? Filtering his way into these things? Moonpie only knows which "injun" Tate is referring two because, as we all learned compliments of Moonpies investigatory journalism skills, Tate is ACTUALLY writing these articles in the 1800's and sending them into the future to make the basketball team play poorly. Please omnipotent Moonpie, is Tate referring to the U of I's retired halftime performer OR AN ACTUAL Indian that lives outside Tate's log cabin, if it is the latter than what on Moonie’s green earth is that "injun" thinking, is he in on this ploy to make the basketball team bad too? What does the "injun" have against the Illinois basketball team?!

What brilliant reporting. NOW moonpie tells us that Beckman won't be fired after a year! Phew, I was sweating that one out because until approx 11 am CST Friday Nov. 30th I hadn’t read anything on the subject. Only a true investigatory journalist like Moonpie would be able to call this as early as he did with such an in depth analysis about how the "injuns" and the basketball players shoes are factoring into the decision making process....

Dearest highest power Moonpie, thank you for once again enlightening us. Where would the world be without your insightful, eloquent, factually supported, well researched investigatory journalist skills?!

The word of the lord.

Thanks be to Moonpie!

ACESGRAD03 wrote on November 30, 2012 at 11:11 am

It isn't about undoing 20 years of incompetence in one season...It is about someone coming in and taking Illinois to new levels of incompetence in one season.  There is absolutely nothing to point to and say, "We are making improvements, or this facet of the team looks good."

The players are confused, defeated, and miserable.

The staff is dopey and calamitous as witnessed in multiple bizarres incidents be it Skoalman or referee bumper cars.

It is just best that we accept the drubbing we will take the next couple of years both on the field and in the media, while praying that somehow, someway we find someone to turn this mess around once the Tim Reaper has moved on.

OrlandoIllini wrote on November 30, 2012 at 2:11 pm

If a head football coach cannot control himself --spawning wrath by recruiting PSU players in Happy Valley (and coming away with one O-lineman bench sitter); violating the NCAA tabacco ban while on national TV; causing multiple sidelines penalties and getting knocked on his rump in the process-- how can he control the program, assistant coaches, or players?

When the Illini go 1-11 or 0-12 next year, then what? Build sky boxes on the east side of Memorial Stadium so there are only 49,000 seats for the 920 fans who remain?

OrlandoIllini wrote on November 30, 2012 at 2:11 pm

Another thing...

Chief Illiniwek was never a mascot. A respected symbol, yes... an honorable, appropriate and dignified symbol. But never a mascot.

aaeismacgychel wrote on November 30, 2012 at 3:11 pm

What's the fuss? Gosh, I can only wonder. Well Loren, I'm sure some fans will make this a bigger argument than it is, by saying these football failures were decades in the making. That what happened this year shouldn't be put on Beckman because of our history of 1 year of success for 9 years of underachievement and utter failure. "Gus Phan" might just do that. Heck, "Gus Phan" might even say that the frustration of all those past failures should be taken out on Beckman as a symbolic way of moving forward from those dark decades into a brighter fure. Yes, "Gus Phan" just might say that.

But I am not "Gus Phan". Nor are most of the Illinois alums I talk to about this are not "Gus Phan". We do not believe in symbolism for this firing, nor do we believe past mistakes can be made up for for sacking Beckman. We are not taking our frustrations with the program or its oft ineptness out on Beckman. No, we are asking for Beckman to be fired because he is deserving of it by himself, for himself. He has failed the team, the fans, the school, and himself in all facets of his coaching this year. He has been an embarassment and blight on a program that you astutely pointed out has its fair share of embarassment. You know why Chicago networks ran with the rumor Beckman might be out and started investigating the veracity of it? Because it was well within the realm of possibility. It was not nonsensical. In fact, if anything, it made entirely too much sense, didn't it?

The majority of your article, Loren, is about how "Gus Phan" shouldn't be infuriated or fussing because either: 1. Illinois football has been bad the last 5 decades. It's history; 2. What happened this year happens at other programs; 3. Illinois basketball is going well and they should focus solely on that; or 4. It wasn't unexpected that Beckman would be retained. It's not like he committed a felony. Isn't that intriguing that those reasons have absolutely nothing to do why Illini fans like me who aren't "Gus Phan" want Beckman gone. And let's focus on that last point for a second, shall we?

"It's not like Beckman committed a felony." Okay, maybe not, but he did do the athletic equivalent of a misdemeanor on his own volition with knowledge that it was a misdemeanor. And he did it in public! In front of live tv! And what punishment did he give himself? NOTHING. What punishment did the AD give him? NOTHING. NO ACCOUNTABILITY FROM ANYONE. Let's move on from tobaccogate and toward's his recruiting in Happy Valley. Was that just an accidental faux pas? Or was it again done with knowledge and intent that was shady recruiting and Beckman just didnt care? No, Beckman hasn't committed a felony (well that we know of) yet, but 'yet' is the key word, is it not? How do his actions look to you, Loren? Does this look like a guy who we can trust with not doing the athletic equivalent of a felony and getting us on probation? Does this coach seem like someone who wouldn't 'break some rules' to get that high level recruit? Does this coach seem like someone who wouldn't be caught doing whatever stupid thing he thinks will help him retain his job? Or Loren, like the rest of us who aren't "Gus Phan" here in Illini Nation, could you see a year or two from now a video tape of him flashing cash to a potential recruit, us getting a few years probabtion, and every single one of us saying, "Well, I can't say this wasn't unexpected"?

This has nothing to do with the past state of affairs of the school. This has to do with Beckman having a horrendous coaching year in every single aspect of his job, having no redeeming qualities, and being completely untrustworthy based on his shady recruiting practices and indifference to NCAA regulations. But yes, basketball is going well so far, and both Beckman and Thomas should be thanking their lucky stars that's the case, because if you think it's bad now, Loren, if we lost those games against Hawaii and Gardner-Webb, Tim Beckman and Mike Thomas would be lucky if they got out of Champaign before the mob of "Gus Phan's" with freshly lit torches and newly sharpened pitchforks found them.

Moonpie wrote on November 30, 2012 at 4:11 pm

rmitchell--my term and yours both work well enough. Guys like Tate -- and illinihimey -- can't stand to have minorities question them when they stereotype them.

illinihimeyiswhiney wrote on November 30, 2012 at 5:11 pm

 

More prophesying from moonpie, the prophet of prophets!!!!! More heaven sent direction, can it be true? Now I can not only join him in his racist right wing white conservative ignorance (which isn’t ignorance because the god of gods decides what is and is not tolerance)!!!!!

 

I now cannot stand when my mother asks me how my week has been. Can you believe that woman, a minority mind you, would ask me questions? At one time I could, alas.... now that the god of all gods... the only one who is entitled to an opinion.... the most righteous off the righteous... the standard bearer of the tea party partiers and the KKK Kers tells me I cannot stand it. I will tolerate it no longer, listen here mom, you shut your mouth when I’m talking to you cause moonpie, the great god of god who you do not deserve to know says I need to hate minorities just like him.

 

 Oh most excellent being, I apologize for initially referring to those "injuns" as “Indians” in my earlier post. I didn’t realize that my using the word "Indian" would stereotype those good people (or are they bad people since you have now sent contradicting messages great god of all things godly) YOU more properly refer to as “injuns”. Again... my ignorance shows through not yours oh great one! I only seek to be as perfect as you, to develop the investigatory journalist skills that allow me to make the tough calls about beckman’s job status after those rumors reported from every other inferior source suggested that his job was safe. Only you oh great one can truly tell us what is truly true. Thank you once again for your wisdom!

 

The word of the lord,

 

Thanks be to moonpie!

JimOATSfan wrote on November 30, 2012 at 4:11 pm

If AD Thomas had defined the one and only final outcome that would cause Coach Beckman to be removed, it is hard to beleive that getting worse in every category, team wise and B1G wise did not qualify (the 2012 season results).

Clearly someone is not thinking. Who cares what conventional wisdom says about contracts?  If you are not moving forward towards championships, move over for the next man.

AD Thomas should be removed when Coach Beckman is removed.

nick wrote on November 30, 2012 at 5:11 pm

 The Athletic Director is a major part of this problem.It seems to me that the AD and Coach Beckman lack the skills to be successful at their jobs. Mr.Thomas hasn't shown much leadership at Illinois.His explanations are based on cliche and are usually evasive,He has been overly secretive,manipulative and sometimes rude. This will be his only opportunity to have a position as good as the job that he now holds. He is not suited for the job. Former President Hogan had a poor track record for personnel decisions and hiring Mr.Thomas is part of that record. Mr. Thomas was not one of the leading candidates for the job. He was a wild card hire with a sketchy reputation. Hogan has always been known for an exotic,off the board style in filling administrative positions.This selection of Mike Thomas fits that pattern.The formal explanation was one that has been used many times.Mr.Thomas supposedly walked into the interview and ''blew away'' the committee with his vision and energy. Now that he is on the job it is apparent that his greatest talent is self promotion. I wish the best for Mike Thomas and Tim Beckman.In order for them to reach the level of success for which they are matched,they should resign and take positions at the appropriate level. I think most honest fans recognize they are overmatched. Speaking truthfully about the Athletic Director and the current football coach does not make an Illinois fan bitter,impatient,unrealistic or immature,as Mr.Tate seems to suggest.This is just a situation in which a poorly devisd plan failed,as many people predicted that it would. The University should move on with integrity and determination. I wish that some of the trustees would show as much passion and concern about Illinois football as those who comment on this forum.That might be an excellent beginning to solving the current problem.


 

blmillini wrote on November 30, 2012 at 11:11 pm

Just curious what it is that Thomas has done or not done that clearly shows that he is unable to perform at the AD.  Seriously!!!  We may question his hiring of Beckman even though I believe the man deserves a chance prior to labeling him definitively as a failure but he appears to have made great hires in Groce and Bollant.  Is there something else that makes it clear to you that he (Thomas) is in over his head?

1 illinifan wrote on November 30, 2012 at 11:11 pm

It cannot be more clear as to the current football program problem, Beckman. If Thomas want s to stand by him both of them should be fired, now, not later so they do not do more damage to the program, really do not know how much more damage they can do but with the only skill set he has he can and will do more damage. To be honest I knew he was going to be bad just not this bad, he exceeded my expectations on being bad at coaching, swell! What a great position to be in. As I have said before the general group of alumni seem to be spineless to do anything about it, not the ones I am in contact with, but in general they have written off the football program as well, lost cause as it were. Cannot blame them either, but I still want to be at the top, and why not? We are after all Illinois, so why shouldn't we be at the top. What we really need is to get Ditka here and give the program and the general alumni some backbone and teach them how to be tough and stand up for something. If they had any spine at all we would not have lost the symbol that we had had for years, just spineless. Florida State told them to pack sand when they were threatened, you know why? Because the alumni said no! Backbone, what we do not have. Maybe we could call the program the jellyfish program, spineless and just go where ever the current takes us, no expectations, no direction, but wait, that cannot be us they have some stings to them and we have none, even they are better. Maybe Ditka and Dick Butkus, hey, drastic times call for drastic measures.

 

Sick of hearing this wimpy baby cry that we cannot fire the coach after one year, one of the Mississippi schools did. Could it be that they have standards? Do we? They must, we do not. Could it be they have expectations? Do we? They do, we do not. Could it be they have the backbone to care less about the several year rule when their program is getting worse? They do, we do not. They have leadership, we do not and after all isn't that what we ought to be teaching? How to stand in the face of adversity and do what is right and best? I would have thought that the academic side would have figured that out by now. It was brought to my attention that a couple of alumni want to sue the school to have Thomas and everyone with the football program removed, I am assuming for incompetency, apparently they have backbone and are feed up with this, kudos to them. Whether that is right or wrong, they have backbone. At this point they may win, they are not doing any thing to improve the players so the players are suffering regardless of their talent level. They have devalued the program, humiliated it in fact, which is evident on the blogs by real fans. No one nationally pays attention to it any longer, not even to ridicule it, that is a bad program. If the program were a business, a real business, it would be bankrupt. They are getting money from some alumni but that is not the same as having customers.

 

Was asked to donate money to the removal cause if it goes forward. Am I? I actually am giving it some thought, my question is, What is best for the programs health? What are the chances for success if that is the only course of action? Since Thomas and Beckman are bent on ruining the program maybe drastic times take drastic measures.

OKOMIS wrote on December 01, 2012 at 8:12 am

Get your FACTS straight… or are you interested in facts… Florida State didn’t tell anyone to pack sand… there is a real tribe in Florida called the Seminoles… they operate the casino’s down here…. The Seminoles, with some financial inducement, spoke out and supported, and said THEY were OK with Florida State using them and their heritage as mascot… the definitive thing is THEY said it’s OK to use THEM… not some toothless, redneck hillbilly…. The fact we still have redneck alumni still taking about an old mascot is insane…. Hat’s off to Steve Spurier who bitched about the South Carolina's Flag containing a confederate one… thank GOD the old fat bigots of the world are dying off…

1 illinifan wrote on December 01, 2012 at 2:12 pm

Sadly you do not have your facts straight, a large section of the tribe was NOT for it at all. It took the Govenor to get involved, as you mentioned financial inducements (a lot from the alumni). Operating a casino had nothing to do with it and is what a lot of tribes do. And yes the NCAA asked them to change and yes they di tell them to pack sand. What any of this has to do with a redneck is beyond me.

 

Since a freind of mine was involved with the workout on this, I have the facts.

OKOMIS wrote on December 01, 2012 at 2:12 pm

the tribe leader ship absolutly approved of FSU using their tribe.. whether they were paid off or not, the OK'd it and Charlie Christ, an alum, absolutly was instrumental in getting the support... and you are wrong, they did not defy the NCAA or tell them to pound salt... they got the tribes approval and THAT'S when the NCAA backed off...

82sage wrote on December 01, 2012 at 10:12 am

     Great article from Mr. Loren Tate.

           What is best for the FB program at our beloved university? Ah, that is the question that deserves some thought without rage, anger, or frustration being the driving force. Understandable emotions but not good to make decisions under the influence of. Has the hiring process of our fb coach been so long ago that we have forgotten the ordeal it was. Did we (our beloved university) have difficulty in attracting the coach we truly wanted here? I think we all know the answer to that question. We want to compare ourselves with others that have fired a coach after their 1st year. If anyone believes that firing TB after his first year would improve our position in the hiring process I have a very difficult time understanding that reasoning.

       Those attacking MT for the hiring of TB well I do understand that he has shown no signs of being a successful coach here. But to call for his (MT) firing seems a little bizzare considering the mens and womens bb hires. If you believe for one minute MT is happy with what has taken place over this fb season I would suggest you maybe a little just a little unreasonable. If he had such a hard time convincing the coaches he truly wanted to come here AGAIN firing TB after year one will NOT improve that. He has to give him at least one more year.

      I am not a fan of TB coaching here. But to go from chewing some snuff to offering a recruit money is a huge stretch. He did nothing illegal in recruiting Penn State players. Was it classy, or something that looked good, I concede it didn't make us look the best. But to go from here to thinking he will get us in trouble for recruitnig violations... I do not doubt his integretity. Yes I know he chewed which is illegal (ncaa.) But from chewing to recruiting scandals is a large leap.

       Take a deep breath, support the ILLINI! We will have to put up with TB another year. We have no other reasonable choice. If there is anything positive the freshman linebackers got a lot of time and looked good. The young rb showed promise. TB needs to tell Young who he is so he can run effectively. Quit juking people or trying to and run somebody's A$$ over. TB if you don't change offensive coordinators choose one to call plays. The offensive play calling this year was OFFENSIVE! Tim Banks in no way shape or form should return as the d coordinator and get a grip TB this is your team get it together!

  GO ILLINI!

Illini '73 wrote on December 02, 2012 at 9:12 am

I like to read the fans' comments.  But I wish they would be more about the subject instead of criticizing each other's comments.

Champ Townie wrote on December 06, 2012 at 3:12 pm

illini '73 - I forgot what the subject was but your comment stinks.  :)