A Full Day at Camp Rantoul

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DuVernois-dive.jpgIllinois went through its final two-a-day practice on Wednesday, and after a number of practices in which the offensive unit set the tone, the Illini defense answered in both practices. The defense stymied the offense in many of the 7-on-7 and team drills throughout both workouts, drawing repeated chants of "hoo-ahhh" from the sideline, a salute that has clearly become the unit's battle cry.
After the morning practice, the team was treated to a trip to the Hap Parker Family Aquatic Center, which is adjacent to the practice fields. Many of the players took advantage of it, enjoying trips down the water slides, crazy dives off the diving board or - if you're a lineman, especially - relaxing in the shallow end under the fake palm tree. Freshman punter Justin DuVernois (in mid-air in the above photo) was clearly the winner of the unofficial diving competition, with senior kicker Derek Dimke serving as the judge. I'm sure there wasn't any favoritism shown toward a fellow specialist.

Night-practice.jpgAt the evening workout, the Illini Quarterback Club had a gathering with over 50 members lining the fence at the south end of the fields. A pair of teams from the Mahomet Junior Football League also watched practice, gathering as many autographs from Illini players as the kids could after practice. With those two groups in addition to our usual assortment of fans and observers, it was a pretty strong crowd.

Post-practice Interviews: Coach Zook | OC Paul Petrino

If you haven't seen it yet, the defensive linemen on the All-Decade Team were announced today. Will Davis, Corey Liuget, Brandon Moore, Chris Norwell and Derrick Strong were named to the team, joining the specialists, which were announced yesterday. We'll keep rolling out the position groups each weekday through Aug. 26.

One annual feature on CoachRonZook.com that we've received a lot of positive feedback from is the Freshman Shout-outs from Camp Rantoul. Creative specialist Frank Lenti shot them and posted them earlier this week, so check out the offense and the defense/specialists.

We only have three more days left at Camp Rantoul, so we're making sure to soak it all in. Thursday's practice is set for 3:30, so come check it out!

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