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Illini defense keeping them in the game against Ohio State

The Illini don’t exactly have Ohio State on upset alert, but through the first half of play in Champaign, Illinois is staying competitive with the defending national champions.

Ohio State heads to the locker room with a 14-3 lead over the Illini, but needed a late score to extend the lead. It’s been the Illinois defense that has kept things interesting through the first half of play.

When the Buckeyes have moved against Illinois, it’s been because of quarterback J.T. Barrett. In his first game back from suspension, Barrett has thrown for over 100 yards and a touchdown. He has also run for a touchdown.

The Illini defense has forced three punts through the first half. They also benefited from a missed field goal and a Barrett fumble.

Illinois hasn’t been able to get much of anything established on the offensive side of things. They have only mustered one scoring drive so far, missing a second field goal after the Barrett fumble.