Chiefs home season ends, Illini’ football begins

I doubt that this is much of an omen. But on Friday night, I celebrated the end of the Peoria Chiefs season with…well, a loss. The Chiefs have been playing better the last week or two of the season..and in fact, they won at Cedar Rapids today.

But Friday was a 9-2 loss. It was an old story; pitching struggles.

(last photo: via the Peoria Chiefs)

Vickie and Harry were there…I was to see Harry the next day though he was at the baseball game.

Illinois Football
Let me be blunt: Illinois is NOT a strong team, far from it. And the Illini faced a horrible Akron team with a new coach and new players. But instead of the squeaker wins they had against Ball State in 2017 and Kent State in 2018, they dominated the way a Big Ten team should. It was 28-3 at the half, 42-3 at the end of 3, and the reserves took it over in the 4’th. The defense set up 3 touchdowns by getting 2 turn overs (interception and a fumble) and set up a short field by keeping Akron bottled up inside its 5 and ..after the punt and return, the offense had it inside the 30 to start.

The offense was crisp. Defense: did ok, though…to be fair, Akron did have some open receivers and hurt themselves with dropped passes. But the Illini hitting may have gotten their receivers to “hear footsteps.”

Total years: 401 for the Illini, 192 for Akron..even that was deceptive (the game was more one sided than that) as the Illini had 3 aforementioned “short field” drives, and the yard were mostly in the first 3 quarters.

Again, I am NOT scouting out Big Ten championship tickets yet. But this team looks, at first glance, to be better than the previous 3 teams that Lovie Smith had. They might win 3-4 of their 9 conference games…MIGHT.
Remember: getting to “average” is a big step up for this program.

Storm clouds: pass coverage. A Big Ten caliber team with a passing attack would have moved the ball against this defense.

Preparation continues

I had taken some Naproxen for my shoulder…and unfortunately is masked my back my back in now stiff because I did not stretch it enough.
Still, I got in a couple of workouts: Saturday: 30:40 for my West Peoria “5K” course; 10:25, 20:50 at 2+. Effort: not easy..I’d call it “medium.”

Sunday (today) thunderstorms came through this morning so I did 2 5 mile walks on the treadmill: 1:03:30 and 1:05:30 for 2:09 for 10. Then outside for 10.37:

The course was the basic House to River past Dozer course, with passage in front of the Riverplex parking lot, going around the goose loop plus another full goose loop lap…both out and back (so 2 extra goose loop laps in total). Time was 2:44:40 for what turned out to be 10.37: 1:21:30 out, 1:22:30 back (uphill) for 15:52 mpm.

Or, 20.37 in 4:53:40