Illinois quarterback Chayce Crouch announces he will “hang up the cleats”


Quentin Shaw

Illinois quarterback Chayce Crouch rolls out of the pocket during the game against Ball State on Saturday, September 2, at Memorial Stadium.

By Gavin Good, Assistant sports editor

Shortly after the announcement that Jeff George Jr. will be transferring from Illinois, fellow quarterback Chayce Crouch announced via Twitter that he is going to “hang up the cleats” and end his football career.

Crouch, who fought through injuries in each of the last two seasons and was in and out as the starter at quarterback, played in seven games and made five starts this season for Illinois.

In those appearances, he completed 45 of 91 pass attempts for 443 yards and threw for one touchdown. Crouch threw four interceptions and added 88 rushing yards on 54 carries. He also played in two games at tight end and had his first career catch in a 45-16 loss at Iowa on Oct. 7. In Illinois’ 20-7 win over Western Kentucky on Sept. 9, Crouch completed a career-best 14 completions for 107 yards.

Chayce Crouch on Twitter: “Thank you Illini Nation! I will always bleed Orange and Blue 🔶🔷 / Twitter”

Thank you Illini Nation! I will always bleed Orange and Blue 🔶🔷

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Crouch said his decision to come to Illinois was the best he ever made, and that he poured every piece of himself into the program that he could.

“I sacrificed my body, flipping into the end zone just to make Memorial Stadium go crazy and grab some extra momentum,” Crouch tweeted. “Hell, I even changed positions in the middle of the season to see if I could help us out in a different way.”

Crouch was voted captain by his teammates for the season opener against Ball State — in which he threw for a career-high 145 yards — and at Ohio State, and he was named to the Academic All-Big Ten team.

Last season, Crouch was 18 for 32, passing for 249 yards and one touchdown in four games before he was sidelined for the rest of the season with a shoulder injury that required surgery. He led an Illini comeback against Purdue with 137 rushing yards after starter Wes Lunt was injured, though the Boilermakers won 34-31 in overtime.


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