A look ahead at Illini football's nonconference slate through 2029

A look ahead at Illini football's nonconference slate through 2029

Illinois and Toledo will meet at Memorial Stadium on Sept. 2, 2023 in the first-ever football game between the two after that nonconference game was announced on Thursday. What other nonconference foes might stir up some interest? N-G copy editor Jordan J. Wilson ranks all 17 that we know:


1. Missouri: Four years of Braggin' Rights starts in 2026. When Mikey Dudek is 31 years old.

2. Duke: Two-year series starts in 2025 in Durham, 60 years since the two last played.

3. UConn: First road game for Illini in 2019 season before Huskies visit Champaign in 2020.

4. Florida Atlantic: If Lane Kiffin is still around for 2020 season opener, look out for the Owls.

5. Toledo: The Rockets have 30 wins in three years. That seems unlikely to wane soon.

6. Virginia: In another two-game venture, Illini tangle with ACC school in 2021 and 2022.

7. South Florida: A trip to Soldier Field is in the works for both teams this season on Sept. 15.

8. Central Michigan: These two foes will meet for the first time on Sept. 24, 2022 in Champaign.

9. Wyoming: If the Cowboys are still Mountain West contenders in 2022, expect a tough one.

10. Akron: The Zips might be off back-to-back bowl bids when they visit to start 2019.

11. Kansas: Jayhawks fans prefer hoops, and Illinois gets chance to visit Lawrence in 2023.

12. Eastern Michigan: Eagles are better, but could change between now and Sept. 14, 2019 visit to C-U.

13. Bowling Green: Big Ten teams give the Falcons a tough time, and Illini get them at home in 2020.

14. UTSA: Though trending upward, this C-USA small fry may get run out of town in 2021.

15. Western Illinois: If you want the family to see an Illini win in 2018, this Sept. 8 game is a safe bet.

16. Charlotte: Illini play two Big Ten games before this struggling program stops by Oct. 2, 2021.

17. Kent State: Woeful Golden Flashes won't bring out the casual fan for 2018 season opener.