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CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Lovie Smith leads the way in the gambling proposition bet category no coach ever wants anything to do with.

The Fighting Illini head coach enters his fifth season as the coach with the hottest seat in the Big Ten Conference according to the gambling website SportsBetting.ag.

Smith, who is 15-34 in four years at Illinois, is coming off a 2019 season where he led Illinois to the Redbox Bowl, the program’s first bowl in five years. The 2019 season included wins at Purdue, Michigan State and upset home win against then-No. 6 Wisconsin where the Illini entered the day as a 30-point underdog before James McCourt’s 39-yard field goal as time expired sent fans rushing to the Memorial Stadium field in one of the greatest Homecoming scenes in school history.

Illinois Fighting Illini head coach Lovie Smith looks on during the second half of a 2017 game against the Minnesota Golden Gophers at TCF Bank Stadium.
Lovie Smith is 15-34 in four years at Illinois but is coming off a 2019 season
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