Illinois overwhelmed by UNC 48-23

Yes, the stadium was sold out and there was a lot of energy there:




And the start couldn’t have been more promising. On the 3’rd play from scrimmage, the Illni broke a 65 yard touchdown run to lead 7-0.

North Carolina responded with a drive of their own to tie it at 7.

Then the UNC defense adjusted, but UNC fumbled a punt, which Illinois recovered at the 30; and they took it in. UNC got a drive to cut the lead to 14-10 and then Illinois lost a fumble (quarterback dropped the ball); UNC took it in and it was 17-14 at the first quarter.

UNC mostly dominated play in the second quarter getting another touchdown. But a great punt pinned UNC deep (2 yard line) and the star Illini defensive end tackled their running back in the send zone for a safety.


Illinois couldn’t convert the good field position after the free kick. UNC had one final drive which lead to the ball at the Illinois 2 with 2 seconds to go They passed up a field goal, but the pass was broken up! So it was 24-16 at the half.

Third quarter: UNC missed a field goal, but scored on a subsequent drive to take a 31-16 lead going into the 4’th. Illinois converted some 4’th downs in cutting the lead to 31-23…but, as they always did, UNC responded with a drive of their own.

A drive deep into the UNC red zone came up empty with another botched hand off (one of several) on 4’th down, and a long TD run put UNC up 45-23. A field goal ended the action.

UNC rolled up 462 yards of total offense getting 197 on the ground, while limiting Illinois to 309. A couple of unsportsmanlike penalties and botched exchanges (hand offs, snaps) hurt as well. But the bottom line is that UNC simply had quicker players.




I’ve watched a few Illinois State games (they are FCS), including last year’s playoff loss to Richmond. They went to Northwestern and won! The winner came with a field goal as time expired.

(note: Illinois State gets so little respect, the title is “Ball State”, which is a MAC (FBS) team).

Navy won a wild 28-24 game over Connecticut; in this game there were fumble returns for touchdowns. But the key came at the end with 17 seconds to go and UCONN with no time outs and at the Navy 2. They ran a running play, got stuffed but had no plan to get another play off.

Arkansas vs. TCU was a wild one. Arkansas lead 20-7 in the 4’th only to see TCU take a 28-20 lead. Arkansas rallied to make it 28-26 with just over a minute left and made the 2 point conversion to tie it.
The Frogs drove it and tried a 28 yard field goal at the end of the game: BLOCKED.

Arkansas won it in the second overtime.


September 11, 2016 - Posted by | college football, football, Uncategorized |

1 Comment »

  1. […] very narrow win vs. Middle Tennessee (missed field goal at the very end). In 2016, the Illini faced North Carolina and a strong Western Michigan team (both blowout losses) and one very bad FCS team (easy […]

    Pingback by What’s in store for Illinois Football this year? « blueollie | July 22, 2017 | Reply

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