ILLINOIS FIGHTING ILLINI
Record: 6-6 (2-6 Big Ten)
Even the most cynical observers and Ron Zook disbelievers couldn’t fathom Illinois being in its current predicament back on Oct. 14. The team was off to a 6-0 start, its best since 1951. Illinois boasted one of the nation’s top passing combinations in quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase and receiver A.J. Jenkins, and defensive end Whitney Mercilus was living up to his surname. The consistency that had eluded Illinois for the better part of the past two decades finally seemed to be in place.
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