Day Two: Blue Team Tidbits

Quick hitting news and notes from Illinois' Team Blue morning practice on Day Two of fall camp.

It was the blue team's turn to rise and grind this morning – the twos and threes had to get up early after taking the afternoon session Monday.

- To be quite honest, not much changed from Day One – the structure of the practice was essentially the exact same and I was able to witness about 15 minutes near the beginning.

- One change that stood out – Wes Lunt was with the blue group instead of the orange. Not that it's a big deal, but he'll probably bounce around quite a bit this fall. Lunt definitely looks the part. He's 6-foot-5 and carries himself like a leader.

- Here's your second team offense:

QB: Reilly O'Toole
RB: Josh Ferguson
WRs: Miles Osei, Steve Hull, Justin Hardee
TEs: Matt LaCosse, Tim Clary
TE/H: Kenny Knight (in certain packages).
OL: Patrick Flavin, Chris O'Connor, Joe Spencer, Jake Feldmeyer, Dallas Hinkhouse

- Hinkhouse, although a JUCO transfer, surprised me being in there. I didn't think he had the size to make it into the two-deep this quickly (he's listed at 275), but he's competing with true freshmen and sophomores so he has an experience edge. I'm sure this unit, the second team OL, will be in flux all season.

- I wasn't able to jot down the entire second team defense, as the unit was constantly subbing in and out. There's no question, at least in my opinion, linebackers Mike Svetina and T.J. Neal combine to create the most solid position on the unit. Those two seem to have taken freshman James Crawford under their collective wing. Crawford is 6-foot-2, 195 pounds and competing for time at the Star position. The three of those guys came out of the locker room before practice together, stretched in unison and spent some time on the second team unit together...

- Speaking of the Star position, Coach Tim Beckman spent a great deal of time working with B.J. Bello. The redshirt freshman has the necessary size, at 6-3, 205 pounds, and is currently competing to be the backup to Eric Finney at the spot.

- One freshman that's generating some positivity is OLB/Leo/DE/whatever you want to call his position Dawuane Smoot. He's listed at 6-foot-3, 230 pounds and is super quick off the edge. I know it's early and he has a lot to learn, but his quickness jumps out when watching what can be mostly bland drills and simulations.

Illini Inquirer Top Stories