Jim Rossow

Jim Rossow

Rossow: Motivation in the form of a question

   Ron Turner could punch a chalkboard, but that would hurt. He could tackle Purdue Pete during pregame warmups, but that would be unsportsmanlike. He could even jump up and down in the end zone during player introductions, but a grumpy ref probably would flag him for excessive celebrating.

   There are easier, safer ways to motivate the lifeless Illini, who don''t have much to play for anymore. All the Illinois coach has to do is ask his players the following questions before today''s game. If they don''t respond with a four-touchdown win or two, then it really is time to start paying attention to basketball.

Rossow: Illini make it official with latest loss

   The first thought was to tell you that for all practical purposes the Illinois football season is a wash.

   But then, that would be old news. You came to that conclusion late in Saturday''s third quarter, when thousands of fans charged out of Memorial Stadium as if Bears-Packers tickets were available at a booth on First Street.

Delany puts up his dukes for Big Ten

   Jim Delany hears about it on his drive to work. He reads about it with his morning coffee. He''s told about it by TV types with mousse in their hair during the 5 o''clock news.

   Big Ten football is down.

Rossow: Attendance, comebacks in demand

   In the first month of the college football season, we''ve figured out who the quarterback is (Jon Beutjer), when the Minnesota game is (you can tape Friends) and how to reach your seat at Memorial Stadium (gates matter).

   But with the Big Ten season a week away, there are plenty of unanswered Illinois questions. Like ...

Rossow: Virgil makes family proud with big day

   When Lloyd Winston planned Saturday''s party at his house on Hill Street in Urbana, he counted on a few friends and family stopping by for fried chicken and baked beans.

   Then his son rushed for 131 yards and scored three touchdowns in his first college game at Memorial Stadium. Good thing the supermarket was on the way home.

Lloyd lets his play do the talking

   CHAMPAIGN  On the field, Brandon Lloyd has as much flair as anyone in the Big Ten.

   Lately, that''s about the only place to spot it.

Rossow: Slow start, fast finish nothing new

   Ron Turner would rather sing the Michigan fight song at noon on the Quad than admit an 0-2 start has ruined his season. He believes Illinois will stop missing blocks, tackles and field goals before it''s too late.

   Not because the starting quarterback is new or practice has been better or the next two opponents don''t have much of a chance.

Rossow: Quarterback conundrum is disturbing


   Ron Turner doesn''t know who will start at quarterback against Arkansas State.

Fumble folly almost costly

   HATTIESBURG, Miss.  Next time, Taman Jordan won''t fire the ball away in disgust. He promises.

   The Illinois sophomore safety made a SportsCenter-worthy blooper in the first quarter of Saturday''s 23-20 loss against Southern Mississippi.

Rossow: Nice town, good team, big trouble

HATTIESBURG, Miss. – If we’ve learned anything from the NFL’s infiltration of Champaign, it is the importance of extending courtesy to the folks providing the hospitality.

Even if the beds are short, the curtains are tattered and the coffee cups are Styrofoam.