CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — ESPN announced their list of 11 beat college football players of all-time on Monday, and two of those 11 are Illini.
Dick Butkus was a two-time All-American at Illinois from 1962-1965.
Red Grange played at Illinois from 1923-1925, as a running back and quarterback, even playing some defense. Illinois sent the authentic jersey Grange wore while with the Illini down to New Orleans for the presentation.
“It’s impressive to have two Illinois players ranked among the top 11 players in the history of the game. They both have statues here on this campus, Dick Butkus and Red Grange. I don’t think anybody needs to validate their legacies in the history of college football but this continues to validate where they stand,” Illinois Associate Director of Athletics Kent Brown said. “Red’s legacy, having been in place for almost 100 year, and is still recognized as one of the top players of all time, it kind of tells you what he meant to the game.”
Illinois is the only school in the country with two representative on the list.