You can bet a lot of the talk was about Wes Lunt, but also about Illinois' defense. They were one of the youngest units in the Big Ten a year ago, but also one of the worst: 10th in scoring defense, 11th in total defense and dead last in defending the run. They do return almost everyone from last year's defense, so depth should be much better this year.
"That side of the conference will be very, very physical and in my opinion," Beckman said of the newly-formed West division. "You still gotta stop the power. We have to play better. There's no question about that. That's tackling and that's breaking on the football. If you look at takeaways - the turnover ratio - who was number 1 in the country? Well Florida State, and they just happened to win the national championship, so those are things we've gotta get better at doing."
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