Pentagram: Champaign Double-Header

Every so often, Illini fans get the home football-basketball double-header.  It’s a chance to see both major sports on campus, but as memory serves, the results never quite seem to go according to script.  So it was Saturday, as the football team still seemed dazed and staggered by the metaphorical kick in the nuts that was the Michigan game.  The Zooker’s boys made lots of mistakes, missed lots of tackles, had some crap luck, and let an inferior Minnesota team hang around and sneak by them in the final minute.  Final score, 38-34, and lots of questions about the leadership and heart of a team that seemed destined for a decent bowl less than two weeks ago.

A few hours later, Bruce Weber squared off against his former employer and former assistant in the form of the SIU Salukis, coached by Chris Lowery.  This was supposed to be the first physical test for the Illini, as SIU has a couple of strong post players, but Demetri McCamey dominated the tempo and the offense, and Illinois proved to skillful and athletic for the dawgs.  In Beemsville, we have a soft spot for SIU and will root for them in every other game they play, but undergrad loyalty trumps grad school loyalty.  It was good to see the Orange & Blue play with poise and intensity en route to an 85-63 win.

A nice result for the basketball team that doesn’t really make up for the horrible disappointment of the football team.  Five points in a dual-sport pentagram…

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