Illini still winless in Big Ten as Hoosiers get their first Conference victory

Illinois Fighting Illini

CHAMPAIGN—Heading into Saturday’s game, Indiana was 0-6 in the Big Ten. Losing that many conference games makes it hard to find something to play for late in the season, but the Hoosiers didn’t have to look far.Indiana’s 24-14 victory over Illinois secured their first conference win of the year and kept their bowl-game aspirations alive. But it was also the first Big Ten victory for head coach Tom Allen.Richard Lagow was the main catalyst for Indiana, throwing for 289 yards and two touchdowns on Saturday.The Hoosiers (4-6, 1-6) racked up 428 yards offense and used a balanced attack to leave the Illini as the only winless team in the Big Ten.Coming into the matchup, Indiana was ranked last in the conference in rushing yards per game at 114.6. But on Saturday, Indiana had 139 rushing yards led by Cole Gest who ran for 82 on 17 carries.Both teams got off to slow starts, but with 1:28 left in the first quarter Jalen Dunlap recorded his first career interception which set the Illini (2-8, 0-7) up at their own 44-yard line but they went three-and-out.Morgan Ellison broke the scoreless tie on a 2-yard plunge with just under three minutes left in the first half. His fourth score of the season capped a 10-play, 45-yard drive.Illinois didn’t give up another rushing touchdown, but Lagow got the job done through the air. He completed 32 of 48 attempts to 10 receivers with Ian Thomas and Simmie Cobbs Jr. both scoring.Cobbs was second on the team with 54 receiving yards has recorded a touchdown in three straight games.