The Illinois Fighting Illini football team had a banner season in 2019, upsetting then-No. 6 Wisconsin as 31-point underdogs in October en route to a six-win season and the program’s first bowl appearance since 2014.
On Wednesday, the program took an “L.”
Head coach Lovie Smith — whose sideline persona included a signature bushy white beard for the previous two years — shaved that glorious beard and is now clean shaven.
The Illini football team’s official Twitter account revealed the updated look for Smith, who went beard-less during his time as an NFL head coach for the Chicago Bears and Tampa Bay Buccaneers from 2004-15.
The Fighting Illini are scheduled to kick off their 2020 season on Sept. 4 against Illinois State in Champaign, Illinois. Their Big Ten opener is against Rutgers on Oct. 3 in Piscataway, N.J.