Day One: Coach Beckman Quick Hitters

CHAMPAIGN - Coach Tim Beckman met with the media Monday morning after Illinois first practice of fall camp.

Initial thoughts after the first practice:"Get out and play. That's what the game is all about is between these white lines. We've got to get better and we've got to prove that we're willing to do it for 60 minutes. That's why we're practicing at these tempos."

Good first practice?"For 52 of them, now we've got 53 coming out this afternoon. I'm anxious. I mean, as a football coach we're all trying to get better. I'm proud of their commitment for the last eight months. We're going on the ninth month now, so let's keep this thing rolling."

On quarterback Aaron Bailey: "Made some decent decisions, had a couple bad decisions. He's got a stronger arm. You've seen him on TV or you've seen him in high school where they were running the football a lot and that's what they do at Bolingbrook, but his arm is a lot stronger than I really thought it was."

On transfer quarterback Wes Lunt:"Wes didn't get a whole bunch of reps, but Wes is out here learning the system. I'm happy to have Nathan (Scheelhaase) and Aaron Bailey and Wes. It's good to have Wes here because of the type of kid Wes is and what he brings to the table, more than just what he brings as a football player."

Thoughts on seeing the players after summer workouts:"You step back and you're proud of your strength staff because we have made strides. You can see bodies that are different. Mason Monheim and Mike Svetina, the freshmen that played last year, they had never been through a winter workout. They hadn't been through spring football. How much their bodies have changed the past 12 months."

Any freshmen standout?:"They're gonna have to. Personally I worked with the corners all day today and Jaylen Dunlap was the only corner that we brought in (for the morning session) and he impressed me. He really did. We've already been with (Darius) Mosely and we've already been with (Dillan) Cazley, so we know about those two. I got to be with them more so I think he has a chance. ... Hopefully one of those defensive ends at the Leo position -- Smoot, Clements and James have a chance."

Feel good about the offensive line?"Yeah I do. I like what coach Ricker is doing. I saw some good holes in there today. We're more of a north-south rushing attack, so that was good to see that stuff."

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