GameThread: Illinois vs. Cincinnati

Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

It's not a bear. It's not a cat. It's a bearcat. And it's not even really an animal.

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When you look at the predictions for this game from everyone on The Champaign Room staff, along with the poll of our readers, it's rather obvious the expectations aren't very high for this game. In fact, the expectations are basically some variation of "I think we can keep it close." Which, around these parts, is almost as good as a win in football.

But sometimes, when you least expect them, good things happen. Maybe the Illini will do more than just keep it close. Maybe they'll win. Maybe this win will start the turnaround in the program we've all been waiting for. Maybe this win will propel the Illini to a bowl game. Maybe even a Big Ten title.

Or maybe they'll just get their ass kicked for three and a half hours and we'll all sit around talking about Quentin Snider and Cliff Alexander.

Whatever happens, let's make sure it happens while we're together in the comments below.

Time: 11am Central
TV: ESPN2, Bob Wischusen, Rod Gilmore, Quint Kessenich
Line: Cincinnati -7.5
Over/Under: 54.5
Forecast: 82 degrees, mostly sunny, 10% chance of rain

Follow The Champaign Room on Twitter at @Champaign_Room and Like us on Facebook. You can follow Tom Fornelli on Twitter at @TomFornelli.

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