Illinois cashes in on Kent State miscues…

Ok, the game was scheduled for 8 pm Friday night. It finally got played at 1 pm on Saturday. It was warm; Illinois offered free parking and free bottles of water…and we used 6 of them between us.

Last night:



At about 10 pm they announced (on the radio) that the game would be played at 1 pm.

So we were there. Illinois tried to entice more fans with dirt cheap tickets, and some did show up, though many either left early due to the heat and the score, though many sought the shade of the upper deck:


Late: Barbara moved us from our seats right at the shade line under the upper deck to the shade of the large score board..and the breeze:


Holly Hart/The News-Gazette Lots of empty seats at Saturday's Illinois Kent State game. University of Illinois Football vs Kent State, Saturday, September 5, 2015 at Memorial Stadium. Illinois defeated Kent State 52-3.

Holly Hart/The News-Gazette
Lots of empty seats at Saturday’s Illinois Kent State game. University of Illinois Football vs Kent State, Saturday, September 5, 2015 at Memorial Stadium. Illinois defeated Kent State 52-3.

And this was the parking lot, right across the street from the stadium, 1 hour prior to game time:


Oh the game:
Well, there is one key stat. It wasn’t so much total yards, 342-245 in favor the Illini. It wasn’t time of possession, which actually favored Kent State by a little:


I’ll describe the first quarter: Kent gets the kick off, gets stalled, kicks a low line drive punt allowing Illinois to return it to the Kent 38.

Quick drive for a touchdown; 7-0 Illinois.

Next drive: Kent throws an interception. First play, Illinois throws a 34 yard touchdown pass.

Next two drives: teams exchange punts; first Kent punts, then Illinois. But Kent fumbles the punt; Illinois recovers at the 28 and drives it for a touchdown, converting on a 4’th down. 21-0.

Next the teams exchange punts again but after Illinois punts; Kent throws an interception that the Illinois linebacker runs to the Kent 11.


11 yard run for a TD and it is now 28-0 in the first half!



Second quarter: one more exchange of punts.

Kent throws an interception (tipped ball) that Illinois gets on the 34. One play: touchdown pass. 35-0.

Illinois stops Kent again; they punt another line drive punt that the Illinois receiver runs back 48 years to the 29. This time Illinois kicks a field goal to go up 38-0. Kent drove it late but Illinois blocked a field goal try.

In the second half, Illinois drove it long to make it 45-0, and then turned things over to the second teams; the second unit had a nice 75 yard touchdown drive and only gave up a field goal.


Upshot: Kent State took themselves out of the game with 3 interceptions and a fumbled punt, and two line drive punts. Illinois had a short field all half long.

Though the Illini made a few sloppy errors, Kent State made many more, costly errors. One wonders how the game delay affected them; they just didn’t look into it. Though they don’t have Big Ten talent, they have enough talent to not be down 38-0 in a half.

It is hard to determine how good Illinois is or isn’t; I do wonder how the pass protection will hold up against Big Ten defenses. The Illinois defense could not have played much better; the first team gave up one drive (first half) and blacked the field goal attempt.

(gif via the Champaign Room)



In other games: Texas is stinking against Notre Dame, and Navy did ok against a middling Colgate team (from the Patriot League; an FCS league).


September 6, 2015 - Posted by | college football, football |


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