WCIA — All that’s left for Illinois football on the 2022 regular season is a trip north to Evanston to take on the 1-10 Northwestern Wildcats.

Illinois is coming into the game with the Land of Lincoln Trophy for the first time since 2015. There is an outside shot Illinois can win the division, but they need help. First and foremost, they need to win the game and Bret Bielema and the Illini are not overlooking the Cats.

“At the end of the year we’re playing good and that’s my challenge to them this week.,” said Bret Bielema. “Northwestern is a 1-10 football team that has played really good. I think if you ask Ohio State and Purdue, two of their last three opponents, how good they are I think they’d have an answer for you that they come to play every day. They’re extremely tough, they’re physical, they’re well-coached. They were in a Championship game two years ago, it’s not like they’ve forgotten how to win games over there.”

The Illini have not won back-to-back in the series since 2010-11. Kick-off is on Big Ten Network at 2:30 p.m.