Beckman on OSU: 'Shocked'
Illinois braved the heat and practiced Tuesday afternoon in the first of three straight days preparing for Washington. Here’s three other tidbits beat writer MATT DANIELS took note of Tuesday:
Shocked. That’s how Tim Beckman described his reaction Tuesday when he heard the allegations surrounding Oklahoma State, where he coached during the 2007 and 2008 seasons.
Sports Illustrated unveiled the first of a five-part series Tuesday that detailed allegations of players getting paid by boosters and other misconduct (tutors completed schoolwork for players, professors gave passing grades for little or no work, the program’s drug policy was not enforced on certain players and some members of a hostess program used by the coaching staff had sex with recruits) from 2001 to ’10 under former coach Les Miles and current Cowboys coach Mike Gundy.
Beckman was Gundy’s defensive coordinator the two seasons he was on staff.
“I was only there 22 months, and it was really only one recruiting class,” Beckman said. “Mike Gundy gave me the opportunity to be a coordinator, and he is a great individual. I was shocked because I had never seen anything that I thought was illegal.”
Wes Lunt, the former Oklahoma State quarterback who played in six games for the Cowboys last fall before transferring to Illinois in June, is not available to the media during the season.
Playing in an NFL venue has its perks for the 21-and-older crowd. Much like those who will attend the Bears-Vikings game Sunday, fans can buy beer at Saturday’s game. Alcoholic beverages are not sold inside Memorial Stadium, but with the game played at the Bears’ home, all the amenities of an NFL game will be available to spectators Saturday. Parking lots around Soldier Field open at 1 p.m., with gates to the stadium opening at 3 p.m. in anticipation of the 5 p.m. kickoff.
Rice Lake (Wis.) High School linebacker Austin Roberts, an Illinois Class of 2014 commit, suffered a torn ACL last Friday during a 28-21 loss at Hudson (Wis.). He is done for the season after a promising start. Through three games, the 6-foot-2, 226-pound Roberts had made 46 tackles while contributing on offense with his blocking at tight end.