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Injury likely forcing Illinois to go back to Jeff George Jr. at QB

The signal-calling merry-go-round continues for Illinois, with the Fighting Illini apparently set to go back to the past for its starter this weekend.

According to reports coming out of the area, head coach Lovie Smith indicated to fans and boosters in attendance at an event earlier in the day Friday that Jeff George Jr. will likely start Saturday’s game against Indiana at quarterback.  George Jr. will replace Cam Thomas, who is suffering from an unspecified injury.

Chayce Crouch started the first four games of the 2017 season before being benched in favor of George Jr. in early October.  For the Week 10 loss to Purdue, George Jr. was benched in favor of Thomas, who made his first career start against the Boilermakers.

Collectively, the Illini’s 100.0 pass efficiency rating is currently 124th out of the 130 teams at the FBS level; just one Power Five team, Rutgers (98.5, 125th), is worse.  That poor quarterback play is a significant reason why the Illini has lost seven games in a row and will miss out on a bowl game for the third straight season, the last two on Smith’s watch.