October 10 Philadelphia Inquirer:
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. – Illinois did more than ruin Penn State’s homecoming with a 33-13 victory Saturday at Beaver Stadium.
The Fighting Illini also crushed the Nittany Lions’ hopes of contending for a conference title. With the meat of the Big Ten schedule approaching, the loss also exposed Penn State (3-3, 0-2 Big Ten) for what it is: a struggling team.
“We stunk,” Nittany Lions coach Joe Paterno said.
Illinois (3-2, 1-1) manhandled the Lions en route to its first victory at Beaver Stadium in seven tries.
Taking its share of lumps, banged-up Penn State lost starting free safety Nick Sukay (pectoral muscle), and defensive ends Eric Latimore (left wrist) and Peter Massaro (quadriceps and dehydration) to injuries along with reserve hero safety Andrew Dailey (stinger) and defensive end Jordan Hill (ankle).
“They kicked our ears in,” Paterno said. “The linebackers, I never thought they saw a pass before.
“But who do you blame? You’ve got to blame us [the coaches]. I’m not going to start going around pointing fingers at kids. I don’t think that’s fair to them.”
Regardless of who’s to blame, Penn State was unimpressive in what several Nittany Lions said last week was a “must-win” game.
Running over and around would-be Penn State tacklers, Illinois compiled 282 rushing yards – the most against the Nittany Lions since Minnesota rushed for 288 in 2004.
Illini junior running back Mikel Leshoure had 119 yards on 27 carries.
Redshirt sophomore quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase, who is not known for his passing, was an efficient 15 of 19 for 151 yards and a touchdown.
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