Ron Zook

New Illinois head coach Tim Beckman. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)

Wisch: Illini’s Beckman Must Tackle In-State Recruiting

Down in Champaign at the state’s flagship school, the football program is listing, which is why Toledo’s Tim Beckman was brought in to right a ship that Ron Zook wrecked after a 6-0 start to the season.

CBS Chicago–12/20/2011

New Illinois head coach Tim Beckman. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)

Wisch: At Long Last, Illini Hire A True Head Coach

Twenty years ago, after compiling a sterling 30-16-1 record on the football field at that “basketball school” down in Champaign, University of Illinois coach John Mackovic bolted the Land of Lincoln for the gridiron riches of the Lone Star State.

CBS Chicago–12/09/2011

New Illinois head coach Tim Beckman. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)

Report: Illinois Wants Toledo’s Beckman

Toledo head football coach Tim Beckman has reportedly emerged as the favorite to replace Ron Zook at Illinois.

CBS Chicago–12/08/2011

University Of Illinois Logo

Illinois Extends Deadline For Football Coach Applications

Illinois has extended the application period for candidates for its head football coaching position until late Thursday night.


Barry Alvarez. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

Wisch: Illinois Needs To Find Its Own Barry Alvarez

I happen to think the Illinois football job offers as much potential as any in the country. Much like, you know, the University of Wisconsin job offered Alvarez two decades ago when he took it over and transformed the Badgers into a snarling, bare-knuckled national power.

CBS Chicago–12/01/2011

Nathan Scheelhaase (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Kittner: Illinois Should Play In Bowl Game

In the wake of the firing of head football coach Ron Zook, the team is meeting Tuesday to decide whether or not it will accept a bowl invitation.

670 The Score–11/29/2011

Greg Schiano. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Who Will Be Illinois’ Next Head Coach?

After firing Ron Zook Sunday, the Illini have started searching for their next head coach.

CBS Chicago–11/29/2011

Ron Zook

Wisch: The Real Reasons Behind Ron Zook’s Rise And Fall

When it comes to the reasons why Illinois’ seventh-year head football coach held on to his job for so long and why he finally lost it on Sunday morning, I can boil Zook’s problems down to just four.

CBS Chicago–11/28/2011

Ron Zook

Illinois Fires Zook After 0-6 Collapse

Illinois coach Ron Zook was fired Sunday after the Illini followed a 6-0 start to this season with a six-game losing streak.


Chris Petersen. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Wisch: Two Names Can Put Illini Football On The Map

I’m sure that Mike Thomas has his own list of names who he’d like to see as his coach at Illinois. But my advice is this: Aim high.

CBS Chicago–11/19/2011

Ron Zook (Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Zook Abruptly Ends Press Conference

In Ron Zook’s defense, he warned them.

670 The Score–11/15/2011

Fighting Illini linebacker Trulon Henry (Photo courtesy

3 Shot At Party Near U Of I Campus, Including Illini LB Henry

Police are searching for the gunman who shot three people, including an Illini football player, at a weekend party near the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign campus.

CBS Chicago–11/13/2011

Ron Zook

Greenstein: Could Zook Be In Jeopardy?

Terry Greenstein of the Chicago Tribune joined The McNeil and Spiegel Show to break down college football.

670 The Score–10/28/2011

Nathan Scheelhaase is pressured by OSU's John Simon. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Illini Under Pressure After 2 Losses

Illinois rolled through its first six games with big plays, comebacks and happy endings, landing a spot in the Top 25 with a perfect start.

CBS Chicago–10/26/2011

Ron Zook

Wisch: As Illini Cool Off, Zook’s Seat Warms Up

Above everything else on Saturday, as Illinois fans trudged out of Memorial Stadium, they were again reminded of the cold, hard truth that Ron Zook is not a big-time football coach.

CBS Chicago–10/17/2011

Ron Zook

Wisch: Illini Perfect, But Not Zook

I didn’t watch the Illinois football game last weekend. Turns out, though, I wasn’t the only one. Because, apparently, Ron Zook didn’t see much of it, either.

CBS Chicago–10/15/2011

Ron Zook

Muller: Schedule Set Up For Illini To Make Run

Before the college football season began, I felt that Ron Zook and his University of Illinois football team had the most to prove in the Big Ten in 2011.

CBS Chicago–09/19/2011

Illinois quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase (2) makes his way through the Arizona State defense while running the option during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 17, 2011 in Champaign. (AP Photo/Seth Perlman)

Illinois Holds Off No. 22 Arizona State 17-14

Illinois sacked Arizona State’s Brock Osweiler six times and turned one into a touchdown in a 17-14 win over the No. 22 Sun Devils on Saturday night.


Illini fans at Memorial Stadium.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Wisch: Zook Has To Wonder Where The Crowds Are

Football is a game of numbers. But when it comes to the job security of Fighting Illini football coach Ron Zook, might it be a game of figures, as well?

CBS Chicago–09/17/2011

Ron Zook

Wisch: Zook’s Decision To Play O’Toole A Real Head-Scratcher

Baffled was again how I found myself last Saturday when Illinois’ seventh-year head coach opted to burn highly touted freshman quarterback Reilly O’Toole’s redshirt eligibility – by playing him for three meaningless snaps in the fourth quarter of a season opener vs. Arkansas State.

CBS Chicago–09/09/2011