The field at Illinois' Memorial Stadium is named Zuppke Field.
There's a reason for that.
Robert C. Zuppke had a lot of success as the head coach of the Illinois Fighting Illini football team from 1913-41. His teams went 131-81 during those 29 seasons.
And four times, his Illini teams won college football national titles.
Has Illinois ever won a national championship in football?
There are five college football national championships claimed by the Illinois football program. They are from 1914, 1919, 1923, 1927, and 1951.
People are also reading…
Those first four teams were all coached by Zuppke.
In 1914, Illinois went 7-0 overall and 6-0 in the Big Ten. In 1919, Illinois went 6-1 overall and 6-1 in the Big Ten.
In 1923, the Illini went 8-0 overall and 5-0 in the Big Ten. The 1923 team included All-American halfback Harold "Red" Grange.
In 1927, Illinois finished 7-0-1 overall and 5-0 in the Big Ten.
Eliot was the Illinois football head coach from 1942-59.