Northwestern vs. Illinois State prediction and game preview. Projecting who wins between the Wildcats and Redbirds.
Northwestern vs. Illinois State Game Preview
When: Saturday, Sept. 10 – 3:30 ET
What To Know About Northwestern
Can Northwestern bounce back after that heartbreaking defeat? Quarterback Clayton Thorson ran left on a keeper with the Wildcats down one with three minutes remaining, lunged for the goal line and had the ball stripped. It rolled into the end zone, where a Western Michigan player tossed the ball back into play and the Wildcats fell on it. A review ruled the play to be a touchback, and Northwestern lost the ball and the game. It spoiled a great performance from Justin Jackson, one of the Big Ten’s top running backs who finished with 124 yards and three touchdowns.
What to Know About Illinois State
Gone are dual-threat quarterback Tre Roberson and All-American running back Marshaun Coprich who helped Illinois State to an FCS runner-up finish in 2014. The Redbirds put up 50 points on an overmatched Valpo team, but new quarterback Jake Kolbe will have to make better decisions after having an interception returned for a touchdown. He did run for a score, but he’s not nearly the threat Roberson was on the ground. Sophomore running back George Moreira showed he can be dangerous after finishing with 93 yards and a touchdown on only seven carries.
Offense: Northwestern – Jackson is the difference and should have another big game.
Matchup To Watch
Jackson vs. Illinois State’s defense
Spread: No Line
Northwestern vs. Illinois State Prediction
Jackson runs for three touchdowns and puts the game away early, helping Northwestern bounce back from last week’s stunning defeat.