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 width=You might think quarterback Reilly O'Toole would want to forget Illinois' 45-14 loss to Nebraska.

But the senior quarterback says an early interception in that late-September game taught him something that's helped him as he led Illinois late this season. He said he learned not to try to do too much.

After a career spent mostly as a backup, O'Toole led the Illini (6-6) to three late-season wins. That run got them to Friday's Zaxby's Heart of Dallas Bowl against Louisiana Tech (8-5).

O'Toole was highly regarded when he came to Illinois. He won two state titles in high school.

But he's spent most of his career behind Nathan Scheelhaase and Wes Lunt.

Illinois offensive coordinator Bill Cubit says O'Toole deserves to finish as a starter.

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