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Huskers lose at Illinois in season opener

Tony Adams, Wyatt Liewer
Posted at 3:55 PM, Aug 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-28 18:22:31-04

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (KMTV) — The Nebraska football team lost its season opener to Illinois, 30-22, on Saturday in Champaign.

Scott Frost has now lost three of the four season openers in his time as NU head coach and is now 12-21 overall at his alma mater.

The Huskers had a 9-2 lead in the 2nd quarter but then the Illini scored the next 28 points.

The Illini got on the board first in the first quarter when Cam Taylor-Britt caught a punt near end zone and was tackled with his knee on the goal line for a safety.

The Huskers responded early in the 2nd quarter with a two-yard touchdown run by Markese Stepp but Connor Culp missed the PAT so NU's lead was 6-2.

Culp added a short field goal later in the 2nd quarter to make it 9-2. But then the Illini scored the final 14 points of the half capped off by forcing an Adrian Martinez fumble and returning it for a touchdown, making it 16-9 Illinois at the half.

Gabe Ervin, Jr. got the start at running back for Nebraska becoming the first true freshman to start an opener at running back in the modern era.

The Huskers host Fordham next Saturday starting at 11 a.m.