Fighting Illini Return To Camp Rantoul

Check out audio and video versions of this afternoon's post-practice interviews with defensive backs Trayvon Waller and Muhammad Abdullah on the Audio/Video page.

PRACTICE NOTES: After a day off, the weather was kind to the Illini for the return to Camp Rantoul. The temperature was cool while the Illini worked out in full pads this morning. Junior fullback Jameel Cook had some welcome back receptions in light afternoon action. He caught two passes from Kurt Kittner for 18 yards. Cook also broke free for a 28-yard touchdown reception from Dustin Ward. Kittner went 6-of-7 in the drill for 74 yards.

After watching film of Saturday night's scrimmage, Head Coach Ron Turner's assessment was mostly positive. "I was pleased with the intensity and execution," he said. "The focus was good. A lot of times in a first scrimmage there will be missed plays and wrong patterns. I did not see much of that." As Turner has said throughout camp, he is concerned with the depth of the squad. "We have talented young players. We'll see how long it takes to get them ready to play."

FIRST NIGHT ILLINOIS: The freshman have hit campus, and on Wednesday approximately 10,000 new students will get their first taste of college classes. On Monday night, those 10,000 people gathered at Memorial Stadium to get acquainted with the other aspects of college life. Students were treated to performances by the Marching Illini, Illinettes, Cheerleaders and the Illinois Dance team as well as the 29-man freshman football class. Coach Turner encouraged every student to become involved in Illinois athletics, then allowed each player to introduce himself to the crowd. Following introductions and lively cheering from the female portion of the crowd, the rookies broke into the newly-learned fight song.

UPCOMING EVENTS: Tuesday, Aug. 22 8:30 a.m./1:45 p.m. Return to Champaign Wednesday, Aug. 23 UI classes begin Practice 3:30 at Memorial Stadium