Illini prepped and ready for first road test

Local Sports

EAST HARTFORD, Conn. (WCIA) — Will UConn be the place Illinois ends the streak? The Illini haven’t won a non-conference road game since 2007, seven straight losses and the majority of those were not even close outcomes. Illinois will look to change that at UConn.

The Huskies are coming off a one-win season, they were one of the worst FBS teams and are just 15-46 the past five years. Combine the fact that UConn barely beat Wagner last week, an FCS program, and Illinois blew out Akron, and there’s plenty of optimism, despite what history may say.

“We mentioned that in our meetings this morning so we’re just honing in, playing our game and just leaving it all on the field to get that win and break that I guess curse, per say, with it being so long,” Dele Harding said.

“We take the challenge on but I don’t think this game should be a problem and we’ll come out with the dub easy,” Nate Hobbs said.

Ron Zook was leading the Illini the last time they won a non-conference road game. It was the Rose Bowl year and ironically enough it was also on the east coast with Illinois beating Syracuse 41-20.

“Good football teams just can’t play at home, you have to be able to go on the road. So I’m anxious to see how we respond the second game,” Lovie Smith said. “I think every year I’ve been here, we’ve won the first game and I’ve talked about improvement from game one to game two and that’s what we need to see. And there’s so much room to improve.”

Illinois is favored by three touchdowns, when’s the last time that happened? Let alone for a road game.

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