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#AskTCR: What's In Bill Cubit's Bag?


Bradley Leeb-USA TODAY Sports

The last day has been pretty fun for me since I posted that story on Quentin Snider. I've had fans from both Illinois and UCLA get mad at me for reporting something I was told, and while I understand why a UCLA fan would be angry -- shooting the messenger is a human pastime -- I'm incredibly amused by the Illini fans who are mad at me.

Some actually think that since I wrote a story based on what I was told from a credible source that Quentin Snider will now go somewhere else. Because the sole motivation behind Quentin Snider's decision on where to go to college will be to teach me a lesson or something.

Others think that I wrote the story to get attention or to get noticed. Never mind that I already have a job for a major media outlet and a reputation of my own to uphold, I'm obviously writing about Quentin Snider to boost my profile and the profile of a site I write as a hobby and that constitutes roughly 5% of my annual income.

This is how some people think.

Though the good news is that I'm fairly confident that the Illini fans who think this way didn't actually go to the school.

Anyway, it's Wednesday, and that means it's time for #AskTCR. If you have a question for #AskTCR and want to see it answered next week, here's how you go about doing it.

There are two ways to ask The Champaign Room your questions. You can tweet them at us on Twitter using the hashtag #AskTCR -- it just makes it easier to keep track -- or you can email them to us at And if you've got a personal question and you're worried about your privacy, just tell us. Well change your name to Tom Crean when we publish it on the site. And remember, you can ask us ANYTHING. It doesn't have to be about Illinois or even sports.

To the questions!

Well, you ask if there are more tricks in the bag, but I'm having a hard time remembering the first trick. Now, I suppose you could just be confused because through two games the Illinois offense has looked good, and surely that must be an illusion or some kind of black magic. If that is indeed the case, well then I'm grateful to have an offensive coordinator that appreciates the dark arts.

As long as they work.

Now, if you were just talking about whether or not Cubit is saving some stuff for later, I'd assume so. Most offensive coordinators do. While you certainly want to put some things on tape to force your opponents to prepare for it, you also want keep some stuff hidden.

Think of it like a game of seven-card stud. Yes, everyone at the table can see four of your cards as they're showing, but you have your two hole cards that only you know, and the final card comes turned face down as well. You don't show all of them until you're looking to collect the pot.

The Big Ten schedule is that pot.

So, yes, I'm confident that Cubit is saving some stuff for conference play. Whether it's a trick play or just a new look, I don't know.

This is somewhat in line with what we just answered, as the philosophy is basically the same. Here's what I wrote about Bailey last week while breaking down his touchdown run against Southern Illinois.

Of course, the Illini should have plenty of chances to get things right on this play. After all, Bailey's other carry on the day came from a similar formation and he picked up the first down. Odds are that the Illini are going to run most plays with Bailey out of this modified single wing, and my guess is that for the first month or so, they'll all be runs.

Then, at some point during Big Ten play, when all of Illinois' opponents have plenty of this formation on tape, Bill Cubit is going to pull out a bomb to Spencer Harris or who ever is lined up out wide.

Yes, you're going to see Aaron Bailey throw a pass at some point. Illini coaches know how strong his arm is. They have seen it. Opponents have not. It will be unleashed on somebody.

I may be biased here, but I would lean toward yes. There are a couple of reasons for this. The first is that Washington is currently ranked thanks to its beat down of Boise State to open the season. The second reason is that, if the Illini do beat Washington, they'll not only be 3-0 but two of those wins will have come against Cincinnati and Washington.

I have a hard time believing there will be 25 other teams in the country who have two wins more impressive than those this early in the season.

Now, will the Illini be ranked if they beat Washington? It's hard to know for sure but you have to think the fact they're already getting votes in both polls after the Cincinnati win is a good sign.

Of course, you know what's more important than worrying about where the Illini will be ranked if they beat Washington? Beating Washington. So let's do that first.

Based on what I've heard from a lot of different people I certainly think there's reason to believe he was on campus. As for the Instagram picture, I have no idea. I haven't seen the Instagram picture.

As for why Cliff would deny he was on campus if he actually was -- and, again, I don't know that he was because I didn't see him -- it's possible that he just wanted to hang out with some friends without it turning into a circus or a story. I know that if I was in Cliff's position and being hounded by people constantly I'd like to just take a weekend and hang out with my friends too.

The problem is it's a lot harder to do that when you're 6'9 and you're hanging out on the campus of a school that is recruiting you.

Another possibility is that Cliff is just denying he was on campus to fuck with people. And, I won't lie, I'm hoping this is the case, because that's probably what I'd be doing too.

No. Frankly you should be ashamed of yourself for moving to Wisconsin. Is that why you went to school? Did you and your parents spend all that money on your education so that you could move to Wisconsin when it was all said and done?



I didn't think so, young lady.

If you compound your mistakes by being supportive of the Badgers, well, I don't know. I'm just too disappointed in you to answer right now.

You chose to study engineering. Much like Paige before you, you must live with the decisions you made, son.

Now, what you should do is suck it up and get the work done. Then after you graduate with your engineering degree maybe you can move to Wisconsin and engineer a reason for that state to even fucking exist.

At the moment I'm not enjoying anybody on the defense too much, as there's a lot of work to be done. I am a fan of Taylor Barton, though I've already seen him make the kind of mistakes you expect someone with his lack of experience to be making.

The one main positive I've seen so far is that Jonathan Brown looks healthy and like the player we saw in 2011. He's flying to the ball all over the field, and I'd like to see that continue.

They aren't done releasing the entire story, but I'm pretty confident that we have nothing to worry about here. With either Lunt or Tim Beckman.

Does anybody want to give Allison money? If you do want to give Allison money, I think Allison should explain to you how you can go about doing that.

I might want to help you out, but I'm not exactly sure what's involved with all of this. I've never sponsored anybody in the Orange Krush. If I do sponsor you does that mean you wear a shirt with my face on it? Could I get one of those big ass cardboard cutout heads instead?

How much would it cost to have you assault an opposing player?

These are the questions I need answered before I can answer yours.


Thanks for the questions! If you submitted a question that didn't get answered, don't worry, it's possible that I'm just saving it for the next mailbag. It's also possible the question sucked and you need to ask better questions next time. I guess you'll just have to wait to find out.

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