The News-Gazette is a newspaper in Illinois. On Friday, Lovie Smith took a full page out of it to send a message to Illinois fans.

The entire ad can be seen here.

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Here’s what Smith wrote to close out his ad:

“I would love for our Fighting Illini football team to run out of the tunnel this Saturday to a packed Memorial Stadium. On top of honoring our great military and our amazing Dads, we hope to celebrate another win with our dedicated fans!

“I hope to see you Saturday!


In short, he’s thanking Illinois fans for what they’ve done this season. He wants Memorial Stadium to be packed against Rutgers. The team is 4-4 right now after going 4-8 a season ago. The Fighting Illini are on pace for their best record under the fourth-year head coach.

Kickoff is set for 3:30 p.m. ET on BTN.