The Fighting Illini passed the halfway point of the four split practices on a warmer, humid Wednesday. After two days of wearing only helmets, the team strapped on shoulder pads for the first time on Wednesday. The Orange team had the quick turnaround after practicing on Tuesday evening, while Blue waited until Wednesday afternoon. Thursday will be the last day of the split practices and the team will go in full pads for the first time on Friday morning.
Four Illini Earn Scholarships
After playing last season as walk-ons, four Fighting Illini players have earned scholarships for the 2013 campaign. Senior safety Ben Mathis, redshirt-freshman long snapper Zach Hirth, tight end/holder Tim Russell and kicker Taylor Zalewski all will receive full scholarships.
Former Player Picnic Set for Aug. 17
The team announced Wednesday that it will be hosting a picnic for former Illini players on Saturday, Aug. 17. The event is free to all past Illinois players and will be held on the patio outside the Legacy Lounge at the northwest corner of Memorial Stadium. The former Illini will be able to eat with and get to know the current squad and coaches, and pass along encouragement and good wishes to the team as it heads into the 2013 season. Any former players wishing to attend can reserve a spot by calling the Illinois football office at 217-333-1400.
Day 3 post-practice interviews: