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Preview: Toledo at Illinois 2023


Mid-American Conference, Toledo Rockets visit the Fighting Illini of Illinois in Champaign, Illinois.


BROADCAST INFORMATION

• Kickoff at 7:30 EST, Saturday, September 2nd on The Big 10 Network

• Mark Followill, Matt Millen, and Elise Menaker will be on the call

• WDWS FM 93.9 or WDWS AM 1400


WHAT'S AT STAKE?

The Illini finished their 2022 campaign with a ReliaQuest Bowl loss to Mississippi State with a respectable 8-5 record with aspirations for another successful season. Meanwhile, the Toledo Rockets are the reigning MAC Champions, winning the 2022 Boca Raton Bowl against Liberty University. Finishing with a 9-5 record. This will be the first time these two programs have ever met on the gridiron.

KEY PLAYERS

QB Luke Altmyer- Illinois

RB Reggie Love III- Illinois

QB Dequan Finn- Toledo

LB Dallas Gant- Toledo


KEY MATCHUPS

The Illini have a newly anointed quarterback fresh out of the transfer portal, Luke Altmyer. Altmyer will be taking the snaps under center against Toledo's seven returning starters who ranked in the top 20 in total yards. The Rockets' Dequan Finn will need to make sure to make as few mistakes when airing out the ball Saturday after a 12-interception season. The Fighting Illini had a whopping 24 interceptions and will be looking to try to best last season's feat.

PREDICTION

This game will be an offensive showdown, I don't foresee this as being a gridlock when it comes to a defensive struggle. The Illini will come out extremely strong in the first half and take the lead by halftime, but I see the Rockets' fifth-year senior QB Dequan Finn picking up the schemes and besting the defense. I have the Rockets going into Memorial Stadium and shocking their Big 10 foes with a final score of 24-17.

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