UI-La. Tech: 5 keys

UI-La. Tech: 5 keys

Is Louisiana Tech going to score half a hundred again?

Probably not. The Bulldogs are third in the nation in scoring (56 points per game) and fifth in total offense (603.5 yards per game), but the Illinois defense will offer more resistance than Houston and Rice did against Tech in the first two games. The Illini defense is good, but their offense might be the best defense. The Illini are 14th in the country in time of possession (33 minutes, 9 seconds), and that will keep Tech's offense off the field.

Can Illinois handle La. Tech's tempo?

"Tempo" is the new buzzword in college football, and the Bulldogs love to play fast. The depth Illinois developed playing a bunch of young reserves last week will help shuffling in fresh bodies to keep up with the fast-paced offense.

Is anybody healthy?

There were a lot of guys wearing shorts and jerseys on the Illinois sideline last week, as injuries have taken a toll. Josh Ferguson is back after sitting with a concussion, and Graham Pocic (knee) should be back, too. After missing the last two games with an ankle injury, Nathan Scheelhaase is expected to start at quarterback for the Illini.

Are night games a good idea?

If they're at home, yeah. The Illini have won four straight under the lights at Memorial Stadium, most recently beating Arizona State a year ago. The Illini are 14-7 all time at home after 6 p.m.

Do they play defense at Louisiana Tech?

They do but haven't done so very well this season. The Bulldogs are 118th in the nation in scoring defense (43 points per game), 120th in pass defense (392.5 yards), 96th in rush defense (192.5) and 120th in total defense.

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