CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) No. 23 Northwestern is on a six-game winning streak for the first time since 1996 and running back Justin Jackson is in rare territory as only the second Big Ten to player to rush for 1,000 yards in four consecutive seasons.
Illinois has made some history of its own in season where wins have been hard to come by and the Illini (2-9, 0-8 Big Ten) are a two-touchdown underdog for Saturday's game against their in-state rival. The Wildcats (8-3, 6-2) are hoping to win 10 games and Jackson, a senior averaging 91.8 rushing yards and 23 receiving yards per game, is a big part of it.
Last week in a 38-0 win over Minnesota - Northwestern's most lopsided victory since 1970 - he became just the sixth player in Big Ten history to rush for 5,000 yards in his career. Only Heisman Trophy winner Ron Dayne of Wisconsin has also rushed for 1,000 yards in four consecutive seasons in Big Ten play.