Perhaps the two conferences could work a trade? I hear one B1G school — I won’t say the name, but it rhymes with “Shmutgers” — may be available.
Trailing Eastern Michigan 31-17 in the middle of the fourth quarter, Illinois rallied for two touchdowns in a span of just over six minutes to tie the game at 31-all. The last score, a 36-yard touchdown pass from Michigan transfer Brandon Peters to USC transfer Josh Imatorbhebhe, was the culmination of a seven-play, 93-yard drive that included a 4th-and-10 conversion from their own seven-yard line.
That would be the highest of the highs on the day for the Fighting Illini as the Eagles’ punctuated their own late-game drive with Chad Ryland‘s 24-yard field goal as time expired to claim a thrilling 34-31 win.
This marks the third straight season that Chris Creighton‘s EMU squad has knocked off a school from the Big Ten. In September of 2018, it was Purdue (20-19); in September of 2017, it was Rutgers (16-13).
Prior to 2017, Eastern Michigan had never beaten a team from that conference in 39 tries.
Overall, the MAC has now beaten at least one Big Ten team in 14 straight seasons.
And try this final nugget on for size: Creighton now has nearly as many wins over Big Ten teams (three) as Lovie Smith (four). Heading into Illinois’ B1G opener against Nebraska next weekend, Smith has posted a 4-23 record in conference play.