UI roundup: Illini hire DL coach

UI roundup: Illini hire DL coach

CHAMPAIGN — Former Southern California graduate assistant coach Austin Clark is the pick to be the new Illinois defensive line coach, according to FootballScoop.com.

Clark will replace Mike Phair, who left for a job with the Indianapolis Colts.

Clark, a former California defensive tackle, worked as a recruiting assistant with the Bears in 2015.

The 27-year-old Tampa, Fla., native joined the Trojans in 2016.

Illinois welcomes back experienced defensive linemen Jamal Milan, Tymir Oliver and Kenyon Jackson. Sophomores-to-be Jamal Woods, Isaiah Gay and Bobby Roundtree all saw significant minutes.

After Clark's hiring becomes official, Lovie Smith will have one spot to fill on his staff. That position has not been announced, but is expected to be on the defensive side of the ball.

Smith said last week his staff will be complete when spring practice starts in early March.

UI falls at Indiana. Brandi Beasley did her best to end Illinois' 0-fer in Big Ten play. It wasn't nearly enough.

The Illini dropped their 13th straight game, falling 70-54 at Indiana on Thursday night.

Beasley netted 21 points for Illinois (9-17, 0-12 Big Ten) and teammate Petra Holesinska added 10 points.

Alex Wittinger, who scored six points in the first quarter, pulled Illinois within 14-10 after 10 minutes. But the Hoosiers (13-12, 6-6) created a more comfortable margin by outscoring the Illini 21-13 in the second period to take a 35-23 advantage at the break and never looked back.

Former Illini joins staff at Vandy

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Vanderbilt football coach Derek Mason has added four assistants to his staff, including a former Illinois player.

They are defensive coordinator Jason Tarver, special teams coordinator Shawn Mennenga, wide receivers coach Aaron Moorehead — who played wide receiver at Illinois from 1999 to 2002 — and cornerbacks coach Terrence Brown. Moorehead, who previously worked with Mason at Stanford, spent the last three seasons as Texas A&M's receivers coach.