Who would have thought that at this point of the season, football would be more of a positive story than basketball at Illinois. Coming off a Texas Bowl victory, Ron Zook and the coaching staff completed signing day by inking 27 players, some of them potential diamonds in the rough. Zook felt that they addressed some needs, getting 15 linemen, 11 skill players, and a punter. A couple players that stand out in the class are lineman Willie Beavers (Southfield, Michigan) and running back Donovonn Young (Katy, Texas), as well as quarterback Reilly O'Toole (Wheaton, Illinois). With Nathan Scheelhaase firmly entrenched as the starter heading into spring practice, it is a positive to have a guy like O'Toole come on board. Whether or not he takes a redshirt will be anybody's guess at this point, but with 8 home games on the schedule for 2011, the potential for another winning season is very much a possibility.
Which brings us to women's basketball, and some serious controversy that arose last week when the Iowa Hawkeyes visited the Assembly Hall. Jolette Law, the coach of the Illini, played her collegiate ball at Iowa, and showed up wearing black and gold, which happen to be the colors of the Hawkeyes. Whether or not it was a coincidence, or a shout-out to her former team remains to be seen, but it was still tacky nonetheless. The play on the court has also been disappointing, as the Illini have lost their last 7 games and enter the week with a dismal 7-17 record. The Illini will host Indiana on Thursday, February 10th (7:00 pm) with a chance to break a rather long losing streak in the process. Let's just hope Law doesn't decide to break out the cream and crimson for this one.