Illinois: Make your Predictions Here!
Illinois Fighting Illini: 2-2
Series Record: 14-3 (Penn State leads)
Head Coach: Ron Zook 9th year (6th in Illinois)
Players to Watch: RB Mikel LeShoure, LB Martez Wilson, WR A.J. Jenkins
Penn State has been beaten, battered and bruised after their loss against Iowa. But good news for Penn State, they are 12-1 after a loss since 2005 and will look to turn things around this weekend in a homecoming match-up against the Illinois.
But the Fighting Illini might have different plans. After scaring Ohio State last weekend in a 24-13 loss, Illinois comes into Beaver Stadium with a solid football team led by dual-threat quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase, who has passed for 489 yards and run 216 more. Although inexperienced, Scheelhaase has the athletic ability to give Penn State’s defense fits.
Illinois’ best offensive weapon, though, is junior running back Mikel LeShoure. The 6-foot, 225-pound running back racked up over 100 yards in the first three games of the season and has 478 yards and three touchdowns so far. Good news for Penn State, LeShoure has helped make the Illini offensive line look much better than it has really performed, and the O-line remains a concern for Illinois, as well as Penn State.
Evan Royster will look to surpass Curt Warner’s all-time rushing record this weekend, and what better day to do that than homecoming? But Royster has a tall mountain to climb, needing 128 yards to become Penn State’s leading rusher.
Penn State has been slow out of the gates this season, while Illinois is known to come out firing. If Penn State doesn’t meet their early-game fire power, it could be a long day for the Nits.
Will Penn State be able to handle LeShoure and the rest of the Illinois offense? Or will Penn State’s stale offense continue to struggle? Make your predictions here!