Thanks for supporting our journalism. This text is on the market exclusively for our subscribers, who abet fund our work on the Chicago Tribune.
CHAMPAIGN — Chez Mellusi ran for 145 yards and a touchdown as Wisconsin beat Illinois 24-0 on Saturday.
Braelon Allen rushed for 131 yards and a touchdown on 18 carries and John Chenal carried nine occasions for 38 yards and a touchdown for the Badgers.
Wisconsin quarterback Graham Mertz became 10-of-19 passing for 100 yards with an interception. The Badgers (2-3, 1-2 Gigantic Ten Conference) outgained Illinois 491-93 yards in total offense.
Coming into the sport, Wisconsin ranked third within the nation and led the Gigantic Ten in total defense, allowing magnificent 249 yards per sport and allowing magnificent 4.3 yards per play. Illinois (2-5, 1-3) had been exhibiting development in its working sport.
One thing had to give. On Saturday, it became the Illinois working sport.
“Our defensive coaches set collectively an even realizing to counter the working sport,” Wisconsin coach Paul Chryst stated. “Nonetheless the teens bring it to existence.”
Proceed Brown led all Illinois rushers with 35 yards on eight carries. Brown rushed for 257 yards in opposition to Charlotte final week and tied his occupation high with two rushing touchdowns.
Illinois beginning quarterback Brandon Peters became 3-of-7 passing for 30 yards ahead of sustaining an unknown bother while being sacked within the second quarter. Artur Sitkowski replaced him and went 8 of 27 for 55 yards.
After the sport, Illinois coach Bret Bielema stated he had no substitute on Peters or principal person linebacker Jake Hansen, who additionally left the sport within the predominant half of due to the an unknown bother.
The Badgers established the crawl early, scoring on a 17-yard Collin Larsh discipline goal leisurely within the predominant quarter to cap an 18-play, 67-yard pressure that featured magnificent three passes.
Wisconsin boasts one in every of the toughest crawl defenses within the nation, and Illinois has one in every of the supreme crawl offenses. Nonetheless the Illini didn’t crawl the ball till the predominant series of the second quarter when Josh McCray rushed for no assemble shut to the Illinois goal line following a Kerby Joseph interception that prevented a Wisconsin touchdown.
“They’re an even defensive team, I net that,” Bielema stated. “We now possess some work to enact. This became one more step within the formulation. It’s not pleasant, nonetheless we possess to grasp it.”
Wisconsin outgained Illinois 206-33 within the predominant half of despite Mertz going 3-of-9 passing for 15 yards. Illinois rushed for 21 yards and passed for magnificent 12 ahead of intermission.
Wisconsin led 10-0 on the break.
Wisconsin tight conclude Jake Ferguson caught a bound in his 39th straight sport, breaking the college file for consecutive video games with a reception previously held by wide receiver Lee Evans, who played for the Badgers from 2000-03.
The Badgers won the sport on the scoreboard, nonetheless it’s sure that is a team struggling to search out itself offensively. Chryst and his workers will possess to rectify that if Wisconsin needs to compete within the Gigantic Ten West.
“It’s obvious we possess some issues to properly-organized up,” Chryst stated. “We’ll be engaged on that this week.”
Chicago Tribune Sports Newsletter
A day by day sports newsletter dropped at your inbox for your morning shuttle.
Illinois coach Bielema became going through his historic team and making an are attempting for his 100th occupation teaching fetch, nonetheless his team became insensible and ineffective from the outlet kickoff. Since the Illini offense didn’t expose up, it became up to the defense to take a look at out to entertain a wide homecoming crowd. The group cheered derisively when Illinois got its fifth first down of the sport — early within the fourth quarter.
“Gotta give credit ranking to Wisconsin,” Bielema stated. “They achieved their sport realizing very wisely. We now possess some issues to work on.”
Wisconsin: Hosts Navy on Saturday.
Illinois: After a bye week, travels to No. 4 Penn Utter on Oct. 23.