Indiana Hoosiers come to Memorial Stadium with a record of 4-2, two shy of being bowl eligible. Indiana features a potent passing attack led by QB #4 Ben Chappell, averaging over 300 yards per game. Favorite targets this year are three wide receivers #88 Demarlo Belcher, #2 Tandon Doss, and #1 Terrance Turner. The Hoosiers effectively use their big TE #83 Ted Bolser who is a redshirt freshman standing 6′ 6” and weighing 252lbs. WOW! Indiana primarily uses the ground game to keep the defense honest, only averaging 100 yards per game. The Indiana running backs #28 Darius Willis and #21 Trea Burgess are used mostly in the red zone and account for 9 of their total 26 touchdowns. The Hoosiers have a consistent kicking game with kicker #16 Mitch Ewald with a long of 45 yards.
The Illini Defense played well enough to win last Saturday, but no one can expect a defense to play eighteen of the thirty minutes in the second half against Michigan State without tiring. The front seven led by #93 Cory Liuget, #97 Clay Nurse, #2 Martez Wilson, #38 Ian Thomas, and #18 Nate Bussey will be challenged quite differently this week. Not since Missouri have we had a QB like Chappell, who throws 75% of the time. Blitzes and pressure must be applied to the Indiana QB all day if we are to win Homecoming on Saturday.
Which Illini offense will show up? Will it be (Dr Jekyll) the Illini offense that dominated time of possession, sustained drives, remained penalty free, and kept our defense fresh against Penn State? Or will it be (Mr. Hyde) the inconsistent, turnover plagued, penalty riddled offense of far too many three and outs that we have seen against #7 Michigan State, #10 Ohio State, and #11 Missouri? Homecoming should be a pleasant relief from being on the road the last two weeks. An Illini record of 3-3 is better than an Indiana record of 4-2 when considering the opponents. With six games remaining on the schedule, the fight to become bowl eligible starts this weekend.
A Time Honored Tradition Celebrates 100 years
The first Homecoming at the University of Illinois was held in October 1910. Two University of Illinois students’ seniors Clarence Foss Williams and W. Elmer Ekblaw came up with a brilliant idea to host the first collegiate homecoming for the University of Illinois alumni. The University of Illinois may pride itself on being the originator of the plan for drawing home the alumni. As The Daily Illini predicted before the Fall Home Coming of 1910, other western Universities have copied the plan of drawing home their alumni. On October 23, 2010 we celebrate the 100th anniversary of this time honored tradition. Exactly three weeks after Illinois hosted the first collegiate homecoming, Indiana hosted Illinois for their version of homecoming at which Illinois defeated the Hoosiers 3-0.
Prep Picks week 9: Villa Grove Bluedevils, Tuscola Warriors, GCMS Falcons, Westville Tigers, STM Sabers, Unity Rockets, SJO Spartans, Mahomet Bulldogs, Danville Vikings, Centennial Chargers.