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Illini football staying positive during down season

The Illinois Fighting Illini are trying to stay positive despite losing bowl eligibility and a 2-7 record.

Reid Compton-US PRESSWIRE

The Illinois Fighting Illini are no longer eligible for a bowl game, though everybody knew that was going to be the case weeks ago, as they have a 2-7 overall record with an 0-5 mark within their conference. It's a lost season, which is disappointing given the fact that they were coming off of two straight bowl game appearances.

But as noted by Chris Davies of CSN Chicago, the Illini are trying to stay positive following the loss. The players and coaches are accountable, and they have some quotes from said players, including quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase.

"Obviously we didn't reach our goals, but in a sense this should refocus us on what should be our goal every day: just going out and getting better – performing to the best of our abilities," he said. "We still can end the season on a positive note. We still can go out and win some games."

The Illini still have some opportunities to win games before the season is over. On Saturday, they'll take on the Minnesota Golden Gophers. As the piece notes, the Illini players believe that the remaining games are just as important as they'd be if they were still eligible to make a bowl game. Getting better is the line around the school right now, and given how they've played thus far, there's definitely a lot of room for improvement.