C Doug Kramer to Be Key Illini on Offense Next Fall

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“The center cannot hold” as the saying goes.

No, because holding results in a penalty.

But at Illinois, the position is one of the strongest, as rising senior Doug Kramer was rated the third best among all who line up there in the power five by Pro Football Focus. He’s a three-year starter who had started 27 consecutive games before missing the RedBox Bowl loss to California because of an injury suffered in the regular season finale.

Spring ball was to be his time to get back into the swing of things.

 

“I know it was going to be a bit of a process coming back,” Kramer said on Monday via teleconference.

“I trust (head athletic trainer) Jeremy (Busch) and the rest of the training staff and then (head strength coach) Lou (Hernandez) and all of those guys in the wight room. Honestly, I felt really good going into this spring ball just before all of this stuff started happening before spring break.”

On Thursday, Kramer posted a video of himself pushing a truck to get some strength training in while at home. (You can see that above)

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While spring ball is wiped out for everybody, and many teams typically hold a lot of players out, Illinois was a team that was really banged up down the stretch of this past season and therefore would be resting a lot of key players; or make them do less than extensive work.

“There was obviously some stuff that might have held me from,” Kramer continued.

“We kind of had a plan going into it. I was going to do as much as I could, try to work in full, 100 percent. Obviously I am coming back from that injury at the end of the year. We were planning on doing as much as I could do. Obviously we’re not going to figure out what that was.”

He also used the teleconference as an opportunity to weigh in on what’s currenlty going on in the world, and the unprecedented times we’re living in.

“Kind of a weird time,” Kramer added.

“Haven’t been doing much. Just hanging out. Working out when I can, where I can. Just trying to find a way to get it done. Kind of a strange time. Hopefully everyone’s families are doing ok, all the loved ones are staying healthy. Yeah, just trying to figure out how to move through this.”

He is very high on the upcoming Illini season.

“We were going into spring ball with a lot of momentum,” he added.

“I think the team feels the best it ever has. Everyone looks great in the workouts. Super competitive. We were seeing some of the young guys start to grow up a little bit. That definitely would’ve happened more during spring ball too.”

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, the author of “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” regularly appears on WGN CLTV and co-hosts the “Let’s Get Weird, Sports” podcast on SB Nation.

You can follow Banks, a former writer for NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com on Twitter here and his cat on Instagram at this link

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