NCAAF Game Recap - Akron at Illinois
Sat Aug 31, 2019 12:00 PM EDT

GATec
14
Clem
52
F
Duke
3
Ala
42
F
UGA
30
Vand
6
F
Hou
31
Okla
49
F
FlAtl
21
OHSt
45
F
GaSo
3
LSU
55
F
MidTN
21
Mich
40
F
ND
35
Lou
17
F
LaTec
14
Tex
45
F
Oreg
21
Aub
27
F
TxSt
7
TxAM
41
F
EWa
14
Wash
47
F
Utah
30
BYU
12
F
Idaho
7
PSU
79
F
FlaAM
0
UCF
62
F
Tuls
7
MSU
28
F
Wisc
49
SoFL
0
F
MiaOH
14
Iowa
38
F
NoIa
26
IASt
29
F(2OT)
Syr
24
Lib
0
F
NMSt
7
WaSt
58
F
SoAl
21
Neb
35
F
NW
7
Stan
17
F
Alb
21
C Mi
38
F
UCLA
14
Cin
24
F
RMor
10
Buff
38
F
Wagn
21
UConn
24
F
Mor
3
BGSU
46
F
C Ark
35
W Ky
28
F
GWebb
28
Char
49
F
AlaSt
19
UAB
24
F
FLInt
14
Tul
42
F
SDSU
21
Minn
28
F
NoCol
18
SJSU
35
F
Kent
7
AzSt
30
F
Rice
7
Army
14
F
UMass
21
Rut
48
F
UtSt
35
Wake
38
F
Purd
31
Nev
34
F
ColSt
31
Colo
52
F
OkSt
52
OreSt
36
F
Miss
10
Mem
15
F
MisSt
38
ULLaf
28
F
InSt
17
Kans
24
F
Akr
3
Ill
42
F
ECU
6
NCSt
34
F
How
0
MD
79
F
Toled
24
KY
38
F
Ind
34
Ball
24
F
Boise
36
FlaSt
31
F
JMU
13
WVU
20
F
URI
20
Ohio
41
F
Buck
12
Temp
56
F
HolyC
7
Navy
45
F
Colg
7
AF
48
F
GASt
38
Tenn
30
F
SCar
20
UNC
24
F
E Mi
30
CoCar
23
F
ETenn
7
App
42
F
MonSt
10
TxTch
45
F
PorSt
13
Ark
20
F
VaTec
28
BC
35
F
SamHu
31
NM
39
F
(N/A)
7
UTSA
35
F
Camp
14
Troy
43
F
UCDav
13
Cal
27
F
VMI
17
Marsh
56
F
IllSt
10
NIU
24
F
Monm
13
WestMI
48
F
AlcSt
10
SMiss
38
F
Nich
14
K St
49
F
SFA
17
Bayl
56
F
SMU
37
ArkSt
30
F
Norf
21
OD
24
F
Mizzu
31
Wyo
37
F
Abil
31
NorTx
51
F
UVA
30
Pitt
14
F
Gram
9
ULMon
31
F
HBU
34
UTEP
36
F
ArkPB
7
TCU
39
F
Web
0
SDSU
6
F
SoUt
23
UNLV
56
F
Fres
23
USC
31
F

Illinois 42, Akron 3

Aug 31, 2019, 12:00 PM EDT

Final

1

2

3

4

T

Akron (0-1)

3

0

0

0

3

Illinois (1-0)

14

14

14

0

42

Illinois crushes Akron 42-3 in home opener
Sat Aug 31, 2019 5:05 PM

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) In his Illinois debut on Saturday, quarterback Brandon Peters showed more than 30,000 Illini fans that he can pass and run and do both pretty well.

Peters, a graduate transfer from Michigan, went 14 of 23 for 163 yards and three touchdowns through the air, while running for another touchdown to lead Illinois past Akron 42-3.

Peters also rushed six times for 36 yards and showed surprising mobility for a 6-foot-5, 220-pounder known more for his arm than his legs.

"Still want to say Brandon isn't a running quarterback?" Illinois coach Lovie Smith joked after the game. "He had a good day for us, I'd say."

Peters was decisive all afternoon despite a tendency to overthrow a few balls, and appeared to show few jitters before his first Illinois start.

"He's been through a lot, so I was glad to see him go out there, go down the field and boom, score right away," Smith said. "He's a confident guy, just what we're looking for in a quarterback."

While Smith, in his fourth year at Illinois, said earlier this week his team is striving for relevancy, first-year Akron coach Tom Arth is looking to find something to build on.

Both teams were 4-8 last year, although the Zips fired longtime coach Terry Bowden.

DEFENSIVELY SPEAKING

Smith, a former NFL coach known for his tough defensive teams, took over as defensive coordinator for Illinois when Hardy Nickerson resigned last October. Smith was determined to toughen things up, defensively, and he did just that.

Akron quarterback Kato Nelson was 10 of 24 with an interception for a Zips offense that struggled from the opening play.

The Zips managed only 64 yards rushing against a stifling Illinois defense led by linebacker Jake Hansen, who had seven tackles, a forced fumble and an interception.

Last season, Illinois gave up 41.7 points per game, which ranked 126th of 130 teams in the nation. The Illini allowed 261.6 yards per game on the ground, 124th in the nation.

Last year's pass defense was a bit better, giving up 260.2 yards per game through the air. On Saturday, the Illini held the Zips to less than a 50 percent completion rate while allowing Nelson only 122 yards with one interception.

RUNNING DEPTH

Illinois has no shortage of talent in the backfield, led by Reggie Corbin, who piled up 1,085 yards and averaged 8.5 per carry last season.

Both Corbin and RaVon Bonner rushed for touchdowns on Saturday.

Corbin carried six times for 38 yards, while Bonner carried six times for 38 yards in a balanced ground attack by the Illini.

Akron was led by Deltron Sands, who rushed 13 times for 39 yards. Brandon Lee carried nine times for 30 yards.

BALANCE

The Illini put up an impressive 401 yards of total offense, including 207 on the ground and 194 passing, while holding Akron to a total of 192 yards.

"We're getting there," Smith said. "We want to be a balanced team, and we played a lot of players today. We accomplished what we wanted to accomplish."

THE TAKEAWAY

Akron: The Zips were outclassed and outgunned, putting up a dismal 128 yards passing into a swarming Illinois secondary.

Illinois: Illinois passed both tests on Saturday, starting with the quarterback position and ending with defense. Neither disappointed.

UP NEXT

Akron: Hosts UAB next Saturday.

Illinois: Travels to UConn next Saturday.

---

More AP college football: https://apnews.com/Collegefootball and https://twitter.com/AP-Top25

Passing

Akr Att Cmp % TD-Pa Yds-Pa LgPa Int Rat
K. Nelson 24 10 41.7 0 122 28 1 40.6
R. Kelley 4 2 50.0 0 6 4 0 56.3
Ill Att Cmp % TD-Pa Yds-Pa LgPa Int Rat
B. Peters 23 14 60.9 3 163 22 0 121.9
M. Robinson 2 1 50.0 0 31 31 0 95.8

Rushing

Akr Att Yds-Ru Avg LgRu TD-Ru
D. Sands 14 47 3.4 11 0
B. Lee 10 34 3.4 8 0
Ill Att Yds-Ru Avg LgRu TD-Ru
M. Epstein 8 45 5.6 14 0
R. Bonner 6 38 6.3 11 1

Receiving

Akr Rec Yds-Rc Avg LgRc TD-Rc
N. Stewart 5 79 15.8 28 0
M. Mathison 3 22 7.3 15 0
Ill Rec Yds-Rc Avg LgRc TD-Rc
R. Smalling 4 54 13.5 22 0
J. Imatorbhebhe 2 34 17.0 22 0

Fumbles

Akr F FL
K. Nelson 1 1

Returning

Akr KR Avg KRTD LgKR PR Avg TD LgPR
J. Knight 2 21.5 0 24 2 11.5 0 15
Ill KR Avg KRTD LgKR PR Avg TD LgPR
K. Cumby 0 - 0 0 1 6.0 0 6
J. Holmes 0 - 0 0 1 5.0 0 5

Punting

Akr Punt Yds Avg LgPu
J. Wieland 7 213 30.4 36
Ill Punt Yds Avg LgPu
B. Hayes 4 184 46.0 51

Takeaways

Ill Int Yds InTD
J. Hansen 1 0 0

Team Stats Comparison

Akr Ill
Points For 3 42
Total Yards 192 401
Rushing Yards 64 207
Passing Yards 128 194
Passing Completions / Attempts 12/28 15/25
Turnovers 2 0
Interceptions Thrown 1 0
Fumbles - Lost 1/1 0/0
First Downs 16 22
Penalties - Yards 5/50 7/75
Time Of Possession 37:37 23:23
Third Down Conversions/Attempts 3/13 9/15
Fourth Down Conversions/Attempts 0/0 0/1
Punts - Average Yards 7/30 4/46

Scoring Summary

1st Quarter Akr Ill
Ill 3:07 TD Reggie Corbin 3 yd run (James McCourt kick) 0 7
Akr 8:31 FG Jerry Fitschen 42 yd FG 3 7
Ill 11:37 TD Ra'Von Bonner 10 yd run (James McCourt kick) 3 14
2nd Quarter Akr Ill
Ill 0:04 TD Trevon Sidney 10 yd pass from Brandon Peters (James McCourt kick) 3 21
Ill 12:56 TD Brandon Peters 20 yd run (James McCourt kick) 3 28
3rd Quarter Akr Ill
Ill 4:18 TD Justice Williams 9 yd pass from Brandon Peters (James McCourt kick) 3 35
Ill 10:30 TD Daniel Barker 2 yd pass from Brandon Peters (James McCourt kick) 3 42
4th Quarter Akr Ill
No scores this quarter

Game Information

Stadium: Memorial Stadium, Champaign, Illinois
Attendance: 30,654
Game Time:
Weather: