Guess what, the Hoosiers are losers no more! With their 31-17 victory over Illinois on the road Indiana snapped an 11 game Big Ten losing streak and with it may have finally gotten over the hump towards winning football. With the win the Hoosiers gave their 2nd year head coach, Kevin Wilson, his 1st conference win. The victory also ruined the Illini's homecoming hopes and kept them winless in conference play.
It's clear that Indiana has bought into what Kevin Wilson is selling as star of the day Stephen Houston said it was all about "Hoosiers to my left, Hoosiers to my right" when asked about what this win means.
Houston was the driving force in the victory for Indiana as he rushed for 71 yards and more importantly had a career best 3 touchdowns on the game, putting his team up 21-14 for a lead they would never give back.
As much credit as Houston deserves it's the opportunistic play of the defense for the Hoosiers that really mattered. They forced 2 major turnovers and came up with two huge sacks in the 2nd half to allow them to stall out promising Illini drives.
Despite the win it wasn't all good for the Hoosiers as they gave up more yards than they gained (292-374) and were just 1-13 on 3rd down conversions in the victory.
That alone has to make head coach Kevin Wilson happy, seeing his team not play it's best football and still getting a victory.
Having said all of that, could this be the catalyst for them to make a run towards challenging for the Leaders division birth in the Big Ten championship game? While unlikely they have to be circling a home date with Wisconsin on November 10th on their calendars.
As for Illinois? Well, they will join the loser of Purdue vs. Minnesota as the only winless teams in the Big Ten with a date with Ohio State in Columbus for the Illibuck Trophy next week looming.