GAMEDAY College Football

Indiana 23, Illinois 20

By MICHAEL MAROT
AP Sports Writer

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Connor Bazelak took Indiana on a 75-yard scoring march on its final series and Shaun Shivers capped it by scoring on a 1-yard run with 23 seconds left to give the Hoosiers a 23-20 victory over Illinois.

Indiana's season-opening victory snapped an eight-game losing streak and a nine-game skid in Big Ten play. Bazelak finished 28-of-52 passing for 330 yards and one TD in his Hoosiers debut.

It was a frustrating finish for the Illini, who allowed only 70 yards in the second half before the final series.

Chase Brown ran for 199 yards and Tommy DeVito threw two touchdown passes for Illinois (1-1, 0-1). Brown became the first Illinois player to open a season with consecutive 100-yard games since 1944.

And yet it still wasn't enough to prevail in this slugfest.

Brown lost one of two fumbles, multiple players were injured and a series of replay reviews that brought the second-half to a stalemate that featured just one score - DeVito's go-ahead 16-yard TD pass to Brian Hightower early in the third quarter - until the final 2 1/2 minutes.

While Indiana struggled to stop the run, Bazelak carved up the Illinois secondary in the first half and again on the final drive. His first completion as a Hoosier went for 40 yards - more than Illinois yielded in last weekend's entire game.

Bazelak, the former Missouri starter, added three more completions of 24 or more yards during the first two quarters including a 52-yard TD pass to D.J. Matthews Jr. that helped Indiana take a 16-10 halftime lead.

His first pass in the third quarter, though, bounced off the hands of receiver Andison Coby and was picked off by Kendall Smith. Five plays later, Hightower lunged across the goal line to put Illinois up 17-16.

Bazelak answered with beautiful clock management to get Indiana into the end zone.

THE TAKEAWAY

Illinois: This one inexplicably got away. The offense dominated the game in total yardage and possession time while the defense allowed just 32 yards rushing. Normally, it would be a perfect script for the Illini. They just couldn't close it out.

Indiana: Linebacker Cam Jones challenged his teammates during the offseason and again Friday and the defense responded. If the Hoosiers continue to play this tenaciously, they'll be competitive every week. The bigger question: Can the offense find its way consistently?


Scoring Summary
First Quarter IllInd
Ind FG 10:03 Charles Campbell 39 yard field goal 0 3
Ill TD 6:22 Isaiah Williams 5 yard TD pass from Tommy DeVito (Caleb Griffin Extra Point) 7 3
Second Quarter IllInd
Ind TD 10:43 D.J. Matthews Jr. 52 yard TD pass from Connor Bazelak (Charles Campbell Extra Point) 7 10
Ill FG 7:01 Caleb Griffin 29 yard field goal 10 10
Ind FG 5:07 Charles Campbell 43 yard field goal 10 13
Ind FG 0:22 Charles Campbell 43 yard field goal 10 16
Third Quarter IllInd
Ill TD 12:59 Brian Hightower 16 yard TD pass from Tommy DeVito (Caleb Griffin Extra Point) 17 16
Fourth Quarter IllInd
Ill FG 2:16 Caleb Griffin 48 yard field goal 20 16
Ind TD 0:23 Shaun Shivers 1 yard TD run (Charles Campbell Extra Point) 20 23
Team Stats
  Illinois Indiana
First downs 29 21
  Rushing 16 2
  Passing 11 16
  Penalty 2 3
3rd Down Efficiency 9-17, 53% 10-19, 53%
4th down efficiency 0-2, 0% 0-0, -%
Rushes-Yards 53-194 26-32
Passing Yards 237 330
Return Yards 60 21
Completions-Attempts-Int 21-36-1 28-52-1
Sacks-Yards Lost 3-22 1-14
Punts 4 6
Fumbles Lost 4-3 1-1
Penalties - Yards 7-71 3-35
Illinois Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
T. DeVito 21 35 237 2 1
C. Brown 0 1 0 0 0
Indiana Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
C. Bazelak 28 52 330 1 1
Illinois Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
C. Brown 36 170 4.7 0
T. DeVito 10 20 2.0 0
R. Love III 5 7 1.4 0
C. Hayden 1 -1 -1.0 0
Indiana Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
S. Shivers 15 28 1.9 1
J. Henderson 6 7 1.2 0
C. Bazelak 5 -3 -0.6 0
Illinois Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
I. Williams 9 112 12.4 1
B. Hightower 4 45 11.3 1
P. Bryant 2 43 21.5 0
T. Reiman 2 16 8.0 0
H. Beatty 1 8 8.0 0
C. Brown 1 6 6.0 0
L. Ford 1 4 4.0 0
C. Washington 1 3 3.0 0
Indiana Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
C. Camper 10 147 14.7 0
D. Matthews Jr. 8 118 14.8 1
A. Barner 4 25 6.3 0
E. Simmons 2 22 11.0 0
S. Shivers 1 9 9.0 0
J. Swinton 2 8 4.0 0
D. McCulley 1 1 1.0 0
Illinois Interceptions
Player Int Yards
K. Smith 1 22
Indiana Interceptions
Player Int Yards
J. Sanguinetti 1 0
Illinois Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
H. Robertson 4 114 28.5
Indiana Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
J. Evans 6 238 39.7
Illinois Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
I. Williams 1 7 7.0
Indiana Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
Illinois Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
P. Vining 2 31 15.5
Indiana Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
O. Cooper Jr. 1 21 21.0
Illinois Missed FG
Player Length
Indiana Missed FG
Player Length




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