Jake Kolbe passed for 312 yards and a touchdown and ran for another to help Illinois State beat Missouri State 34-9 in the Missouri Valley Conference opener for both teams on Saturday.
The Redbirds (3-0, 1-0) pulled away in the third quarter as Kolbe led touchdown drives of 60, 64, 58 and 35 yards. His 28-yard TD pass to Anthony Fowler made it 34-6 with 7 seconds left in the period. The Bears (1-3, 0-1) capped the scoring on a late field goal.
Both teams had 236 yards of total offense in the first half before Illinois State outgained the Bears 217-0 in the third.
Kolbe finished 24-for-32 passing with an interception. Spencer Schnell had nine catches for 135 yards and James Robinson ran 10 times for 81 yards and a score.
Deion Holliman gave Missouri State the early lead on a 53-yard TD sweep, but the Bears had the PAT blocked.