CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) Rod Smith had a bit of music for the ears of Illinois fans who watched the Illini scuffle along on offense last season.
"We're going to try to make them defend (the entire field)," said Smith, who was formally introduced Friday as the new offensive coordinator at Illinois. "I think the hardest skill to do in football is tackle a skill-kid in open field. . We're going to try to get guys out in space."
Smith spent six years as the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Arizona, helping establish it as one of the best offensive teams in the country. Last season, the Wildcats averaged 41.3 points (fifth in the FBS) and 489.5 total yards per game. A lot of that success was because of Khalil Tate, a dual-threat quarterback who scored 26 total touchdowns.