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Illini Hope They’re On the Road to Improvement

WGIL Newsroom . State Sports 155

illiniCHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) — Illinois opened preseason training camp hoping to begin the road to something better than last season’s four wins.

The Illini had a solid offense last season. It scored 29.7 points a game under first-year offensive coordinator Bill Cubit. That was after scoring 16.7 points a game in 2012.

Cubit is back, but he lost senior quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase. Strong-armed transfer Wes Lunt is the likely replacement. But head coach Tim Beckman hasn’t yet named a starter.

What Illinois needs most is defensive improvement. Illinois gave up 35.4 points a game in 2013.

Most of last year’s defense is back. Beckman said Monday he hopes the experience lets the defense make the kind of leap the offense made last season.