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Illinois News: Big Ten coaches respond to Illinois allegations

Four Big Ten coaches commented on the Illinois player mistreatment allegations.

Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

"I haven’t studied the facts. I’ve only seen some of the facts, and that’s all I worry about. I’m not going to worry about all the other stuff. I’m always sad to see when someone doesn’t have a good experience."

- Pat Fitzgerald via Charlotte Carroll & Michal Dwojak, The Daily Illini

Pat Fitzgerald, Darrell Hazell, Jerry Kill, and Kyle Flood, weighed in on the Illinois player mistreatment allegations during Big Ten Media Days. They each gave the typical 'I don't know the specifics of the situation' response, but Fitzgerald actually gave a pretty lengthy answer about his own coaching philosophy.

"This summer has been big for me," he said. "I didn’t have to sit out for (any) injuries, so I’ve just been grinding."

- Kendrick Nunn via Marcus Jackson, The News-Gazette

Kendrick Nunn sat down with the News-Gazette to discuss the offseason, his health, and Tracy Abrams' injury. Remember, this will be the first time that the junior guard can utilize the entire offseason to improve; he had a minor knee surgery last year and his practice time was limited until just before the season started.

Jackson also asked Nunn about the point guard situation--here's is response:

Abrams’ absence opens a gaping hole at point guard for the Illini. Can Nunn be one of those guys tasked to man that position at some point this season?

"If it comes to that, I could play a little bit like a combo guard," Nunn said. "I feel like I could be able to get the ball to my teammates."

He'd have to improve his dribbling and decision-making, but moving Nunn into the lead guard role for a few minutes each night wouldn't be the worst move in the world. If there's one thing he's shown during his time in Champaign, it's that he has the ability to make plays for both himself and his teammates.

"Naperville Central's Mike Stine has called Emmanuel Rugamba one of the most highly-recruited athletes the talent-rich suburban Chicago program has ever produced. Saturday, Rugamba ended that recruitment, announcing that he plans to sign with Iowa next February."

- Steve Batterson, Hawkmania

On Saturday, three-star wide receiver Emmanuel Rugamba committed to Iowa over Illinois, Indiana, Boston College, Connecticut, Iowa State, Pittsburgh, and a number of other Mid-American Conference programs. has Rugamba pegged as the No. 12 Illinois native in the class of 2016. It would've been nice to see the Illini land the Naperville Central product, but wide receiver is perhaps the program's strongest position right now.


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