Dienhart: What I will be looking for at Illinois practice

Mike Granse-USA TODAY Sports

Hopes are high in Champaign, as Illinois takes the wraps off the Lovie Smith era. Will he be the coach to deliver a consistent winner to the Illini Nation? Smith arrives from the NFL with a big reputation, but he will be Illinois’ fifth coach since 1997 following Ron Turner, Ron Zook, Tim Beckman and Bill Cubit.

The defensive line looks strong, and Dave Revsine believes running back Ke’Shawn Vaughn is going to be one of the top breakthrough players in the conference this season.

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