A guy with the last name of Smith spoke to the media in Champagne on Monday. It’s probably not the guy you’re used to hearing from on Monday’s wearing that Illinois orange.

Following the news on oSunday that Lovie Smith had been relieved of his duties with the Illini, interim head coach Rod Smith got to do his inaugural weekly coach press conference with the media as Illinois prepares to take on Penn State in its championship week matchup.

Smith takes over the head coaching gig after serving as the Illini offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach since 2018. This move requires some shuffling on the coaching front.

Besides a shuffling of coaches, Smith also has to deal with the current roster of players and those who are expected to join Illinois in the future.

As for the game against the Nittany Lions, it’s probably the final game of the season for a struggling Illinois team. That means the Illini can treat it different from a normal game.