There was a lot of good that happened on Saturday. This Illinois team was different than what we saw in the past and for 60 minutes it looked like growth in the right direction. After reviewing the tape, there is room for improvement as this team looks to prepare for Week 1.
Whether it was making substitutions, making halftime adjustments, or executing an 8-minute, 14-play, 75-yard TD drive, Illinois was a different team than what we saw under Lovie Smith. In the first quarter, Illinois was abysmal running the ball. Take away Mike Epstein's 45-yard run, Illinois had -15 yards on the ground and 35 passing yards in the first quarter.