Detailed grades probably aren't necessary to describe the disappointment that's been the Illinois Fighting Illini's first year under coach Tim Beckman, but ESPN Chicago's Brian Bennett took to the task anyways Tuesday, giving the team an "F" grade for the year.
"Sorry to be harsh with the grades, but there just wasn't much of anything to like about Beckman's first year in Champaign," Bennett said. "Illinois beat just one FBS team -- Western Michigan, which later fired its coach. After that season opening win, the Illini went 1-10 with the only victory over an FCS opponent."
Breaking down the grades by unit, Bennett gave the highest score to the special teams unit, an underwhelming D-plus. The offense received an "F" like the team as a whole, while the defense received a D-minus despite some "top-flight playmakers."
Of the offense, Bennett finished his comments by simply saying, "Just a near total failure here." One would imagine that most Illinois fans agree with such an assessment.