New Illinois athletic director Josh Whitman showed the league he means business about exacting change—now—by firing Bill Cubit on his first day on the job and hiring Lovie Smith two days later. [ MORE: Twitter: Illinois football family reacts to Love Smith hiring ] The future is now. No sense in waiting to turn the page. It’s all about authoring a better tomorrow in Champaign for a consistently underachieving program. So, Whitman felt Cubit wasn’t the future. And, he acted. With lightning speed and authority by inking Smith to a six-year deal that will pay him $2 million annually for
In the span of three days, Illinois fired and hired a coach. Lovie Smith brings instant credibility. Bob Asmussen has pros and cons to Smith’s hiring. There is great opportunity in Champaign. It will be key how Smith shapes his staff. Who will be his coordinators? And key recruiters are ultra-vital. And, the guy who got fired, Bill Cubit, was shocked—to say the least—about getting canned after making over his staff in the offseason. “Just shock, it really is,” Cubit told IlliniInquirer.com on Saturday afternoon. “My biggest thing really is No. 1 the players and then No. 2, it’s the
The regular season is over. Now, it’s off to Indianapolis for the Big Ten tourney, where top seeds Indiana and Michigan State look like the teams to beat. [ MORE: View the official Big Ten tourney bracket ] Before we turn all of our focus to the tourney at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, let’s take a look at the best of the last week of the regular season. Best win: Rutgers vs. Minnesota. There were several big wins by the contenders, but it has to be the previously winless Scarlet Knights’ 75-52 win vs. Minnesota on Saturday. The blowout victory snapped
Illinois is turning the page … again. [ MORE: Miss Josh Whitman’s press conference? Watch it on BTN2Go ] New A.D. Josh Whitman isn’t wasting any time in putting his stamp on the program, dropping a bomb by firing Bill Cubit on Saturday, his first official day on the job. What’s next for Illinois, a school that since 2011 will have had four football coaches, three athletic directors and two hoops coaches? Illinois’ football program remains mired in tumult. Just last August, then A.D. Mike Thomas fired Tim Beckman a week before the season started amid allegations he had mistreated
Change is the operative word at Rutgers, as Chris Ash continues to put his stamp on the program after taking over for Kyle Flood. [ MORE: Get all of Tom Dienhart’s Big Ten spring football coverage ] Ash has work to do after arriving from a gig as defensive coordinator at Ohio State. Good thing his area of specialty is defense, as the Scarlet Knights need a lot of help on that side of the ball. Rutgers ranked No. 13 in the Big Ten in total defense in 2015 (462.0 ypg) and 12th in scoring (34.9 ppg). The back seven
If the Boilermakers make a march to big things in coming weeks, Rapheal Davis will have played a big role.
Athlon ranked the top 25 football players in the Big Ten - can you guess who is No. 1? Also, Jim Harbaugh got some more attention on Twitter. One writer says Minnesota made a mistake keeping Jerry Kill involved in the program. These stories and more in Friday Big Ten news digest.
For Purdue this spring, BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart will be watching three areas for the Boilermakers: Quarterback, offensive line, and defensive line. And there is work to do in all three areas.
How rare are outright championships in Big Ten men's basketball? Here is a look at the last time each men's program won the Big Ten outright. The biggest surprises: Purdue hasn’t done it since 1996, Iowa since 1970 and Michigan State since 2009.
There is a report that Wisconsin is preparing an offer to Greg Gard for the full-time job. Did you see the Ivy League has removed hitting from football practice? And it looks like Michigan has a new position for Big Ten Freshman of the Year Jabril Peppers. Get caught up on Thursday links in today's news digest.