>>Illinois Can't Hang With No. 5 Wisconsin
Alec Ingold and Garrett Groshek scored on short runs in the first half, offensive lineman Michael Deiter added another touchdown on a trick play late in the game, and No. 5 Wisconsin beat Illinois 24-10 on Saturday to remain unbeaten.
Star running back Jonathan Taylor rushed for just 73 yards but didn't appear in the second half for Wisconsin because of a left leg injury. The freshman entered the game averaging 158.6 yards rushing.
Despite Taylor's absence, Alex Hornibrook made enough throws to get the team's eighth win. None was better than on the trick play that freed Deiter for his first career touchdown.
Hornibrook dropped back on third-and-goal from the 4 and rushed right before throwing a backward pass to Deiter on the other side. Deiter caught it and hustled his 328-pound frame in for the score.
Wisconsin (8-0, 5-0 Big Ten) gained 306 yards, well below its season average of 462.7 yards, but was able to overcome a sluggish performance for its 11th consecutive conference victory.
Jeff George Jr. and Cam Thomas both struggled passing, combining to go 9 of 31 for 152 yards. They were sacked five times. Thomas threw two interceptions.
The Illini (2-6, 0-5) finally scored a touchdown on a 3-yard run by Kendrick Foster late in the fourth periods, but Thomas threw his second interception that ended any hopes of a comeback.
Illinois hits the road to face Purdue next Saturday.
>>Illinois State Routs Youngstown State
James Robinson ran for 117 yards and a touchdown, Markel Smith had a career-high 124 yards and another score, and Illinois State dominated Youngstown State 35-0 on Saturday.
The Redbirds (6-2, 4-1 Missouri Valley Conference) piled up 299 yards on the ground and held the Penguins (3-5, 1-4) to 147 yards of total offense.
Robinson's first touchdown, an 11-yard scamper, ended Illinois State's first possession. Two snaps later, Tyree Horton sacked Nathan Mays and forced a fumble that Matt McCown returned 26 yards to make it 14-0.
Smith's 1-yard run with nine seconds left in the second quarter made it 21-0. Robinson had a pair of short touchdown runs in the second half.
Illinois State's four scoring drives were 72, 73, 55 and 80 yards and took between nine and 12 plays, leading to a 13-minute advantage in time of possession. The Redbirds forced two turnovers and had five sacks.
>>UT-Martin Topples Eastern Illinois
As heard on WHOW, Anthony Brown returned a strip-sack 17 yards for a touchdown and UT Martin used five turnovers to beat Eastern Illinois 27-10 on Saturday.
UT Martin scored 17 points off those turnovers. Brown's score made it 10-3. Four plays later, Tae Martin returned an interception 42 yards and Troy Cook connected with Donnell Williams for a 1-yard score.
Kahlid Hagens set up the Brown's TD with a sack and Hagens' 6-yard interception return ended Eastern Illinois' final drive of the first half.
James Gilleylen returned an interception 27 yards, leading to a field goal for a 27-10 lead, and Andrew Horton-Martindale made UT Martin's fourth interception.
UT Martin (4-4, 2-3 Ohio Valley Conference) only attempted 12 passes and gained 80 yards on 39 carries.
Bud Martin threw for 155 yards and three interceptions for Eastern Illinois (5-4, 4-2), which outgained UT Martin 275 yards to 192.