Archive for January 2020

Former Eastern, Western players square off for NFL title

Former Eastern, Western players square off for NFL title
Eastern Illinois and Western Illinois fans have an added interest in Sunday’s Super Bowl. Former EIU quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo is the starting quarterback for San Francisco, while former WIU defensive lineman Khalen Saunders plays for Kansas City. Moreover, it’s likely the two will go head-to-head on the field as the 49ers and Chiefs battle for... Read more »

SIU's Chinn ready to soak in Senior Bowl experience

SIU's Chinn ready to soak in Senior Bowl experience
Southern Illinois senior Jeremy Chinn grew up outside Indianapolis at a great time to be a Colts fan. Before becoming one of the top college safeties in the country, Chinn cheered on legendary Colts such as Bob Sanders, a smart, hard-hitting safety from the University of Iowa. Chinn never focused on one position as a... Read more »

Ex-ISU Redbirds cap collegiate careers with strong showings in East-West Shrine Bowl

Ex-ISU Redbirds cap collegiate careers with strong showings in East-West Shrine Bowl
Playing in an indoor stadium whose main occupants are a Major League Baseball team, two former Illinois State Redbirds may have opened doors and more than a few eyes in their quests toward professional football careers. Running back James Robinson and safety Luther Kirk grabbed attention with their performances in the practices leading up to... Read more »
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5 burning questions for Eastern Illinois in 2020

5 burning questions for Eastern Illinois in 2020
With a combined 50 freshmen and redshirt freshmen, the 2019 Eastern Illinois football roster was overwhelming in its amount of inexperience. The result was a 1-11 record in head coach Adam Cushing’s first season and freshmen galore all over the field – at running back, offensive line, the secondary, linebacking corps and more. There were... Read more »

Eastern Illinois Panthers Postseason Capsule

Eastern Illinois Panthers Postseason Capsule
Eastern Illinois Panthers Ohio Valley Conference Head Coach:  Adam Cushing Overall Record:  1-11 Conference Record:  1-7 Biggest Win:  It took until Nov. 9, but the Panthers finally broke into the win column with a rousing 49-38 triumph at Tennessee State. Darshon McCullough (155 yards) and Jaelin Benefield (105 yards) each broke the rushing century mark and the EIU defense regrouped... Read more »

5 burning questions for Western Illinois in 2020

5 burning questions for Western Illinois in 2020
On a Thursday night in August in Alabama, the Western Illinois football stumbled to ta 26-17 loss against North Alabama. For the Leathernecks, who beat two ranked teams in 2018, the losses in 2019 just kept coming. During a 1-11 season, WIU endured injuries, defensive lapses, offensive struggles and an 0-8 start. Turning the calendar... Read more »
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Western Illinois Leathernecks Postseason Capsule

Western Illinois Leathernecks Postseason Capsule
Western Illinois Leathernecks Missouri Valley Football Conference Head Coach:  Jared Elliott Overall Record:  1-11 Conference Record:  1-7 Biggest Win:  Trailing at one time by 13 points, Western rallied to pull out a 38-34 thriller over South Dakota as Clint Ratkovich broke loose for a nine-yard touchdown run with 34 seconds left to delight the home crowd at Hanson Field. Most Frustrating... Read more »

5 burning questions for Southern Illinois in 2020

5 burning questions for Southern Illinois in 2020
For the Southern Illinois football program, 2019 was a breakthrough. The Salukis’ 7-5 overall record and 5-3 Missouri Valley Football Conference marks were the first winning records since 2013. It was also the first winning season in head coach Nick Hill’s four-year tenure. SIU put together an impressive five-game winning streak down the stretch, beat... Read more »

Southern Illinois Salukis Postseason Capsule

Southern Illinois Salukis Postseason Capsule
Southern Illinois Salukis Missouri Valley Football Conference Head Coach:  Nick Hill Overall Record:  7-5 Conference Record:  5-3 Biggest Win:  SIU’s coming out party came in its second game. Following an opening-season loss (see below), the Salukis reeled off 35 unanswered points to shock UMass 45-20. It marked SIU’s first win against an FBS opponent since 2007 and... Read more »
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5 burning questions for Illinois State in 2020

5 burning questions for Illinois State in 2020
Running back James Robinson is taking his immense talents to a potential pro career. Looking ahead to 2020, that leaves a big hole in the Illinois State offense. Just how big? Robinson’s 364 carries this season were the second-most in ISU history, and he led the Missouri Valley Football Conference with 1,917 yards and 18... Read more »