2008 Illinois Fighting Illini football team

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2008 Illinois Fighting Illini football
Fighting Illini logo.svg
Conference Big Ten Conference
2008 record 5–7 (3–5 Big Ten)
Head coach Ron Zook
Offensive scheme Spread Option
Captain Arrelious Benn
Captain David Lindquist
Captain Brit Miller
Captain Juice Williams
Home stadium Memorial Stadium
(Capacity: 62,870)
Seasons
« 2007 2009 »
2008 Big Ten football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
#8 Penn State §   7 1         11 2  
#9 Ohio State §   7 1         10 3  
#24 Michigan State   6 2         9 4  
Northwestern   5 3         9 4  
#20 Iowa   5 3         9 4  
Wisconsin   3 5         7 6  
Minnesota   3 5         7 6  
Illinois   3 5         5 7  
Purdue   2 6         4 8  
Michigan   2 6         3 9  
Indiana   1 7         3 9  
† – BCS representative as conference champion
‡ – BCS at-large representative
§ – Conference co-champions
Rankings from AP Poll

The 2008 Illinois Fighting Illini football team represented the University of Illinois in the 2008 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The team's head coach was Ron Zook. The Illini played their home games at Memorial Stadium in Champaign, Illinois. This was Ron Zook's fourth season as the Illini head coach.

Schedule[edit]

Date Time Opponent# Rank# Site TV Result Attendance
August 30 7:30 PM[1] vs. #6 Missouri* #20 Edward Jones DomeSt. Louis, MO (Arch Rivalry) ESPN[1] L 42–52   66,441
September 6 11:00 AM[2] Eastern Illinois* #24 Memorial StadiumChampaign, IL BTN[2] W 47–21   60,131
September 13 11:00 AM[2] Louisiana-Lafayette* #24 Memorial Stadium • Champaign, IL BTN[2] W 20–17   58,632
September 27 7:00 PM[3] at #12 Penn State #22 Beaver StadiumUniversity Park, PA ABC[3] L 24–38   109,626
October 4 2:30 PM[4] at Michigan Michigan StadiumAnn Arbor, MI ABC/ESPN2[4] W 45–20   109,750
October 11 11:00 AM[5] Minnesotadagger Memorial Stadium • Champaign, IL ESPN[5] L 20–27   62,870
October 18 7:00 PM[6] Indiana Memorial Stadium • Champaign, IL BTN[6] W 55–13   62,870
October 25 11:00 AM[7] at Wisconsin Camp Randall StadiumMadison, WI ESPN2[7] L 17–27   81,241
November 1 2:30 PM Iowa Memorial Stadium • Champaign, IL ABC/ESPN W 27–24   62,870
November 8 11:00 AM[8] vs. Western Michigan* Ford FieldDetroit, MI ESPN+ L 17–23   12,865
November 15 12:00 PM #10 Ohio State Memorial Stadium • Champaign, IL (Battle for Illibuck) ESPN L 20–30   62,870
November 22 2:30 PM at Northwestern Ryan FieldEvanston, IL (Battle for the Sweet Sioux Tomahawk) BTN L 10–27   32,166
*Non-conference game. daggerHomecoming. #Rankings from AP Poll. All times are in Central Time.

Game notes[edit]

Missouri[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
Fighting Illini 6 7 15 14 42
Tigers 7 24 14 7 52


Eastern Illinois[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
Panthers 7 0 0 14 21
Fighting Illini 7 19 14 7 47


Louisiana Lafayette[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
Rajin' Cajuns 3 0 0 14 17
Fighting Illini 10 7 0 3 20

In the first quarter, Matt Eller kicked a 51-yard field goal. Brit Miller recovered Michael Desormeaux's fumble for a 27-yard touchdown. Drew Edmiston kicked a 24-yard field goal for Louisiana Lafayette. Juice Williams passed to Daniel Dufrene for a 10-yard touchdown in the 2nd quarter.

In the second half, Desormeaux rushed for a 34-yard touchdown and passed to Erick Jones for an 11-yard touchdown. Matt Eller kicked a 27-yard field goal for the Fighting Illini.

Penn State[edit]

The Illini lost on the road to the Nittany Lions 38–24 in a nationally-televised, prime time, "White Out" game at Beaver Stadium. Illinois jumped out to a 14–7 lead, becoming the first team to take a lead on the Nittany Lions and the first to score points against them in the first quarter this season. However, the Nittany Lions responded with two touchdowns en route to a 21–14 halftime lead. The Illini wouldn't score again until kicking a field goal on the final play of the third quarter after recovering a Stephfon Green fumble, but Derrick Williams returned the ensuing kickoff for a touchdown.

The loss was head coach Ron Zook’s first as a head coach against a ranked opponent. The Illini's 24 points were the most allowed by Penn State this season as were their 189 total rushing yards.[9]

Penn State wide receiver Derrick Williams became the first player under PSU head coach Joe Paterno to score a rushing, a receiving, and a kick return touchdown in the same game.[9][10] Williams was selected the Big Ten Special Teams Player of the Week.[11]

1 2 3 4 Total
Fighting Illini 14 0 3 7 24
Nittany Lions 14 7 3 14 38


Michigan[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
Fighting Illini 3 14 7 21 45
Wolverines 14 0 0 6 20


Minnesota[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
Golden Gophers 7 0 7 13 27
Fighting Illini 0 3 3 14 20


Indiana[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
Hoosiers 7 0 3 3 13
Fighting Illini 14 14 13 14 55


Wisconsin[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
Fighting Illini 0 10 7 0 17
Badgers 3 7 7 10 27

The Fighting Illini fell to the Badgers 27–17 for Wisconsin's first Big Ten win of the year. The Badgers outscored Illinois 17–7 in the second half.

Iowa[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
Hawkeyes 0 6 3 15 24
Fighting Illini 7 3 7 10 27


Western Michigan[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
Fighting Illini 7 0 3 7 17
Broncos 3 17 0 3 23


Ohio State[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
Buckeyes 9 14 0 7 30
Fighting Illini 7 6 0 7 20


Northwestern[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
Fighting Illini 0 0 7 3 10
Wildcats 6 7 3 11 27


Rankings[edit]


Ranking movements
Legend: ██ Increase in ranking. ██ Decrease in ranking.
NR = Not ranked. RV = Received votes. ( ) = First place votes.
Week
Poll Pre 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 Final 
AP 20 24 24 22 22 RV RV NR NR NR NR NR NR NR NR NR NR 
Coaches' 19 25 RV 23 21 RV RV NR RV NR RV NR NR NR NR NR NR 
Harris Not released RV RV RV NR NR NR NR NR NR NR Not released 
BCS Not released NR NR NR NR NR NR NR NR Not released


References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Kick Time Changed For 2008 Opener". University of Illinois at Champaign/Urbana Department of Athletics. May 22, 2008. Retrieved May 22, 2008. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Game Times And Future Schedules Set For Illinois Football". University of Illinois at Champaign/Urbana Department of Athletics. July 2, 2008. Archived from the original on July 6, 2008. Retrieved July 4, 2008. 
  3. ^ a b "Big Ten Announces Five Prime-Time Football Games to Appear on ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 During 2008 Season". Big Ten Conference. April 16, 2008. Archived from the original on April 20, 2008. Retrieved April 16, 2008. 
  4. ^ a b "Time, Television Set for U-M Homecoming Tilt vs. Illinois". Michigan Sports Information. May 12, 2008. Archived from the original on May 17, 2008. Retrieved May 12, 2008. 
  5. ^ a b "Illinois Homecoming Game Time Set". University of Illinois at Champaign/Urbana Department of Athletics. May 12, 2008. Archived from the original on May 14, 2008. Retrieved May 12, 2008. 
  6. ^ a b "Illinois-Indiana Game Set For Prime Time". Illinois Athletics. May 21, 2008. Retrieved May 22, 2008. 
  7. ^ a b "Welcome home:Badgers, Illini kickoff set". Wisconsin Badgers Sports Report. May 10, 2008. Archived from the original on July 17, 2011. Retrieved May 11, 2008. 
  8. ^ "Illinois-WMU game time set". Illinois Athletics. June 13, 2008. Archived from the original on June 18, 2008. Retrieved June 13, 2008. 
  9. ^ a b Thomas, Eric (September 29, 2008). "Not Just Getting by Anymore". The Sentinel (Carlisle). Retrieved September 29, 2008. 
  10. ^ "Penn State Remains Unbeaten, Tops Illinois, 38–24". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. September 27, 2008. Retrieved September 28, 2008. 
  11. ^ "Michigan, Northwestern and Penn State Football Players Honored After Big Wins". Big Ten Conference. September 29, 2008. Archived from the original on October 1, 2008. Retrieved September 29, 2008.