College Football

Illinois Fighting Illini (2-6)


New Illinois coach to make homegrown talent a priority

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) New Illinois coach Bret Bielema said Monday he hopes to have a staff in place by early January and is already concentrating on homegrown recruiting.

"I called (the Illinois Department of Transportation) and told them to put up roadblocks so kids won't be allowed to leave the state," he joked at his introductory news conference. "Seriously, I can't tell you how many Illinois high school football coaches I have talked to already. We are making Illinois kids a priority here."

Bielema, a native of tiny Prophetstown in northwestern Illinois, replaces Lovie Smith, who went 17-39 overall in his five-year tenure and posted a 10-33 Big Ten record. Bielema's initial contract is for six years beginning with an annual salary of $4.2 million.

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Leaders
Passing Yards: B. Peters429
Passing TDs: I. Williams4
Rushing Yards: C. Brown540
Rushing TDs: M. Epstein4
Receiving Yards: J. Imatorbhebhe297
Receiving TDs: B. Hightower3
Interceptions: J. Hansen2
Schedule 2020
Date Opponent Result / Time
9/19 at Indiana Cancelled
10/23 at 14 Wisconsin L 7 - 45
10/31 vs. Purdue L 24 - 31
11/7 vs. Minnesota L 14 - 41
11/14 at Rutgers W 23 - 20
11/21 at Nebraska W 41 - 23
11/28 vs. 4 Ohio State Cancelled
12/5 vs. 19 Iowa L 21 - 35
12/12 at 14 Northwestern L 10 - 28
12/19 at Penn State L 21 - 56
Big Ten
East
  Conference Overall
3 Ohio State 5-0 7-1
11 Indiana 6-1 6-2
Penn State 4-5 4-5
Maryland 2-3 2-3
Rutgers 3-6 3-6
Michigan 2-4 2-4
Michigan State 2-5 2-5
West
  Conference Overall
14 Northwestern 6-1 7-2
15 Iowa 6-2 6-2
Wisconsin 3-3 4-3
Minnesota 3-4 3-4
Nebraska 3-5 3-5
Purdue 2-4 2-4
Illinois 2-6 2-6
Offense (FBS Rank)
Yards: 2792 (88)
Passing Yards: 1223 (104)
Rushing Yards: 1569 (52)
Points per game: 20.1 (111)
Yards per game: 349.0 (99)
Touchdowns: 19 (103)
Field Goals: 7 (81)
Defense (FBS Rank)
Yards: 3738 (69)
Passing Yards: 1897 (57)
Rushing Yards: 1841 (99)
Points per game: 34.9 (97)
Yards per game: 467.3 (114)
Touchdowns: 35 (88)
Field Goals: 7 (29)
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