Play for injured players


The Daily Illini File Photo

Illinois running back Mike Epstein runs with the football during the game against Purdue at Memorial Stadium on Oct. 13.

By Tatiania Perry, Staff Writer

Illinois *insert name here* was carted off the field due to *insert injury here.*

Dear Bobby Roundtree …

“Illinois defensive end Bobby Roundtree remains hospitalized in Florida after surgery for a severe spinal injury suffered in a May 18 swimming accident,” according to the Chicago Tribune.

Dear Mike Epstein …

“Illinois running back Mike Epstein will miss the rest of the season after suffering a knee injury Saturday in the opener against Akron,” according to the Chicago Tribune.

Dear Marquez Beason …

Illinois freshman Marquez Beason was carted off the field on Tuesday at Illinois football training camp after suffering a knee injury. The extent of the injury is not clear,” according to the Chicago Tribune.

Illini fans are sad. We feel for you, and we are rooting for you.

Your teammates have dedicated their season to you. Like the Lorax who speaks for the trees, I (self-proclaimed) speak for the fans in saying, this season all thoughts are for you guys.

I’m sure you hate to hear, ‘I know how you feel,’ followed by an unrelated story. This isn’t that.

I don’t know how you feel.

I don’t want to pretend that I do.

I, like most fans, am just sorry.

Sorry your season ended before you could step on campus, ended before you played your first game, stopped abruptly for the third time.

Sorry you are missing a year of growth.

Sorry you have been set back and are missing a time to truly be apart of what could be the pivotal season for the Illini.

Our hearts go out for you.

We are somber.

Dear Illinois football team …

You have a duty to uphold. I know you already dedicated your season to those guys, but you have to follow through.

Not to be that person, but in the past few years, you let a few fans down. This year is different. This is for the guys, the bros, the homies.

This is finally the year you have to step up and actually follow through. Not to be harsh, but you guys can’t choke this year.

Things go wrong. That’s normal. There are obstacles to overcome, and there are trials to get through, but you have to preserve.

After all, this season isn’t about you. This is about Roundtree, Beason and Epstein. This is for them.

You let the fans down. They get over it. They are a resilient bunch who will ride with you no matter what. You owe them, but honestly, whatever.

Please don’t let these guys down when they are able to truly don the orange and blue again. Let it be on the tails of the first winning season in five years.

Dear Illini fans,

Root for them.

Continue to support this team and support those who will be on the sidelines.

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