Coaches corner: Bill Cubit
RANTOUL — Outside of Tim Beckman’s press conference on Sunday, Bill Cubit had the most media surrounding him at Memorial Stadium during Illinois’ media day.
The same scenario has happened the first two days at Camp Rantoul for the Illini offensive coordinator.
“I see you guys more than I see my wife,” Cubit joked to the assembled media.
His evaluation of quarterbacks Wes Lunt, Reilly O’Toole and Aaron Bailey is one of the most popular talking points surrounding Illinois, in addition to when one of the three will get named the new starter.
Who will replace the Big Ten’s leading passer last season in Nathan Scheelhaase is an answer many Illinois fans are waiting to hear — and have waited for since the 2013 season ended more than eight months ago.
Cubit understands. He said he wasn’t bombarded too many times away from Memorial Stadium about whether Lunt, O’Toole or Bailey will line up under center against Youngstown State on Aug. 30.
“One time maybe when I was at Stone Creek (Golf Club), one of the guys came up and asked and was laughing, and said, ‘I know you haven’t heard this question before,’ ” Cubit said. “I like what’s happening (with the quarterbacks). I really do. We’re so far advanced of where we were last year in trying to teach. I thought Nate was really good where he was at, but the other guys weren’t up to par. Now, we’re all on the same page.”
Cubit knows what to expect out of Camp Rantoul, too, since he’s back for his second time.
“I think I got the same room,” he said. “I felt like I was right back at home. I did know to bring my own shampoo and my own soap, so that was a good thing.”
Cubit can rely on someone he trusts this time around in giving feedback on how the quarterbacks are faring. His son, Ryan, is experiencing his first Camp Rantoul.
The younger Cubit, a former quarterback at Western Michigan and Rutgers and former offensive coordinator at Western Michigan, is on Tim Beckman’s staff as the director of football student-athlete development. He also keeps an eye on how Lunt, O’Toole and Bailey fare during practice sessions.
“He’s my sounding board,” the elder Cubit said of his son. “He comes over after practice, and we sit, and we talk. I can bounce ideas off him because he has played the position, and he has coached it before. It’s huge. Plus, he’s happy. He loves being around football.”