One thing we know for sure is that if the Illini are going to be taken seriously this year they must have a good showing against the Hawkeyes. I saw one too many posts about last weeks game insinuating that losing to the Illini is cause for the opposing head coach to be fired. Another recent post crowed that Urban Meyer's job is safe as long as he doesn't lose to the Illini. Not surprisingly the Hawkeyes are favored and that makes logical or statistical sense. Based on both teams records and quality of teams played to date it is hard to argue against the logic. But don't count out the Illini based on statistical probabilities. This weekend is another opportunity for the Illinois squad to silence the naysayers.
The Illinois Fighting Illini play the Iowa Hawkeyes this Saturday, start time at 12:00 PM ET., at Kinnick Stadium, Iowa City, IA.
The Illinois Fighting Illini (4-1) are coming from a 14-13 win over Nebraska in Week 5. Wes Lunt completed 23 of 45 passes for 251 yards and two touchdowns. On the ground, Ke’Shawn Vaughn rushed for 98 yards in 24 attempts while Josh Ferguson added 50 yards in four attempts. In receiving, Geronimo Allison had 91 yards and one touchdown in eight receptions while Malik Turner added 70 yards in four catches.
On the season, the Illinois Fighting Illini average 244.4 yards in passing and 155.8 yards in rushing. Defensively, the Fighting Illini yield 176.2 yards in passing and 127.2 yards in rushing.
The No. 22 Iowa Hawkeyes are coming from a 10-6 win over Wisconsin in Week 5. CJ Beathard completed 9 of 21 passes for 71 yards and one touchdown against one interception. On the ground, Jordan Canzeri rushed for 125 yards in 26 attempts. In receiving, Matt VanderBerg had 61 yards in six receptions.
On the season, the Iowa Hawkeyes average 209.8 yards in passing and 185.8 yards in rushing. Defensively, the Iowa Hawkeyes yield 215.4 yards in passing and 84.4 yards in rushing.
Best luck to the Fighting Illini. Looking forward to the match-up!
Scott Davis blogs about sports, charitable giving, and business