Luke McCaffrey on a first-half carry.

Illinois 41
Nebraska 23

Nov. 21, 2020 • 11 a.m. Central
Memorial Stadium •Lincoln, NE • FS1
1st2nd3rd4th F 
First quarter
ILL: Brown 3 run (McCourt kick) 13:31
NEB: McCaffrey 5 run (Culp kick) 9:20
ILL:  Brown 2 run (McCourt kick) 5:39
Second quarter
ILL: Imatorbhebhe 28 pass from Peters (McCourt kick) 13:48
NEB: Culp 30 field goal, 7:32
ILL: Epstein 1 run (McCourt kick) 5:50
Third quarter
ILL: McCourt 24 field goal, 8:23
NEB: McCaffrey 1 run (Culp kick) 6:48
ILL: Peters 1 run  (McCourt kick) 2:31
Fourth quarter
ILL: McCourt 21 field goal, 10:14
NEB: Falck 4 pass from Martinez (run failed) 2:12

                            ILL      NEB
FIRST DOWNS................. 25       25
RUSHES-YARDS (NET)...... 52-285   44-215
PASSING YDS (NET).......... 205      177
  Att-Comp-Int......... 25-18-0  30-18-3
TOTAL OFFENSE .......... 77-490   74-392
Fumble Returns-Yards....... 0-0      0-0
Punt Returns-Yards......... 0-0     3-29
Kickoff Returns-Yards..... 2-40     3-63
Int. Returns-Yards........ 3-31      0-0
Punts (Number-Avg)...... 3-45.7   2-49.0
Fumbles-Lost............... 4-0      4-2
Penalties-Yards........... 3-31     7-66
Possession Time.......... 36:21    23:39
Third-Down Conv. ........ 11/17     4/12
Fourth-Down Conv. ......... 1/1      2/5
Red-Zone Scores-Chances.... 6-7      4-4
Sacks By: Number-Yards.... 3-28      1-8

ILL: Epstein, Mike 13-113; Brown, Chase 26-110; Peters, Brandon 8-36; Williams, Isaiah 3-14; Hayes, Blake 1-14; Team 1-minus 2.

NEB: McCaffrey, Luke 26-122; Robinson, W. 7-60; Scott, Marvin 8-22; Martinez, A. 2-8; Johnson, R. 1-3.

ILL: Peters, Brandon 18-25-0-205.

NEB: McCaffrey, Luke 15-26-3-134; Martinez, A. 3-4-0-43.

ILL: Navarro, Donny 5-58; Imatorbhebhe, J. 4-71; Barker, Daniel 3-42; Washington, C. 2-11; Cumby, Kyron 2-minus 1; Hightower, Brian 1-12; Brown, Chase 1-12.

NEB: Robinson, W. 6-60; Allen, Austin 5-43; Martin, Oliver 2-30; Falck, Levi 2-11; Vokolek, Travis 1-16; Betts, Zavier 1-9; Johnson, R. 1-8.


Stats & Recap
Complete Stats

Huskers fall flat against Illini

Nebraska committed five turnovers, and visiting Illinois converted the miscues into 24 points as the Huskers fell to the Fighting Illini 41-23.

The Huskers mustered 392 yards of total offense but still slipped to 1-3. Redshirt freshman quarterback Luke McCaffrey rushed for 122 yards and two touchdowns on 26 carries while adding 134 yards on 15-of-26 passing. But the young Nebraska quarterback also threw three interceptions and fumbled on the game’s first play from scrimmage.

That fumble, a short throw that was ruled a lateral and a fumble, was recovered by the Illini’s Jake Hansen to set a strange tone for the game. Three plays and 21 yards later, Illinois was in the end zone after Chase Brown’s three-yard scoring run just 1:29 into the game.

The Fighting Illini, who improved to 2-2, finished with 490 total yards, including 285 on the ground and 205 yards passing.

Omaha World-Herald*
Lincoln Journal Star*
Nebraska Athletics
More Neb. Sources
More Sources
Pregame & team info
2020 schedule
10/24@ Ohio St.L 17-52
11/07@ NorthwesternL 13-21
11/14Penn St.W 30-23
11/21IllinoisL 23-41
11/27@ IowaL 20-26
12/05@ PurdueW 37-27
12/12MinnesotaL 17-24
12/18@ RutgersW 28-21
Cam Taylor-Britt



Frankly, at times the Huskers looked like a team completely unfamiliar with football.


Some of the shots and arrows will come from inside Nebraska and the fan base. They want to believe. But they’re tired. Everyone is tired of this.

Omaha World-Herald

After this type of result, I become really confused as to how Frost can sell the notion that his rebuilding job at Nebraska is moving in the right direction.

Lincoln Journal Star

This is about execution, both on the players’ side of things and on the part of the coaches.

Hail Varsity

There are no excuses for this one. NU was not mentally or physically ready to play vs. Illinois, and that is simply inexcusable.


We’ll see where Illinois goes from here, but Nebraska appears to have sunk to rare depths Saturday. Football hell, you might say.

Omaha World-Herald

Luke McCaffrey is definitely a ball of dynamite when he's got a path to run, but the distance to travel in the passing game remains significant.


Losing like this? ... It’s not something that often-used platitudes from the coaching staff and players can fix.

Daily Nebraskan

The Huskers are not at a place as a program where they can just show up and beat teams in this league without full preparation.

Hail Varsity
* Article may require subscription