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Tackling will be focus during off-week

The Illinois football team gets a couple extra days off with the bye week coming up on Saturday. They won't practice Monday or Tuesday. It will be a chance to get rested for next week's game vs. Miami (OH) (11:00 a.m., BTN). As for what the team will be working on in practice this week: tackling. The Illini missed a number of key tackles in Saturday's loss 34-24 loss to No. 19 Washington. The defense took a big step forward last week against Cincinnati, but Saturday's loss showed there is still a lot of work to be done on the defensive side of the ball. "Tackling was probably the major concern in the third and fourth quarter," Beckman said. "We've got to tackle better when we're playing a team that's a Top 20 football team." Illinois hung with Washington through the first half, but the Huskies fast paced offense took its toll on Illinois in the second half. A fatigued defense gave up too many easy points. "Its very frustrating," said Houston Bates, who had 8 tackles Saturday. "When plays are there to be made, you've got to make them. When you don't make them, they score."
CHICAGO -- The Illinois football team gets a couple extra days off with the bye week coming up on Saturday.  They won't practice Monday or Tuesday.  It will be a chance to get rested for next week's game vs. Miami (OH) (11:00 a.m., BTN).

As for what the team will be working on in practice this week: tackling.  The Illini missed a number of key tackles in Saturday's loss 34-24 loss to No. 19 Washington.  The defense took a big step forward last week against Cincinnati, but Saturday's loss showed there is still a lot of work to be done on the defensive side of the ball.

"Tackling was probably the major concern in the third and fourth quarter," Beckman said.  "We've got to tackle better when we're playing a team that's a Top 20 football team."

Illinois hung with Washington through the first half, but the Huskies fast paced offense took its toll on Illinois in the second half.  A fatigued defense gave up too many easy points.

"Its very frustrating," said Houston Bates, who had 8 tackles Saturday.  "When plays are there to be made, you've got to make them.  When you don't make them, they score."
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