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Three Things: Indiana 24, Illinois 14

The Hoosiers finally picked up a Big Ten win even if it wasn’t in the most convincing fashion

Indiana v Illinois Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images

Finally, at last, the Indiana Hoosiers picked up a Big Ten win. Sure, it came against the worst team in the Big Ten, but wins are wins and for the Hoosiers, they seem to be coming at a premium right now.

Defense rules the day

There were hiccups along the way, but the IU defense was relentless and suffocating, specifically in the first half.

Illinois finished with only 294 yards of offense with 77 of those coming on the first play of the second half. Wipe out that one explosive play and you can see how dominant the Hoosiers were.

They also finally forced some turnovers. Rashard Fant should have about three interceptions on the day but still grabbed one while Tegray Scales sealed the game with one of his own. Indiana actually finished with a positive turnover ratio, which seems like a rarity this year.

There were mistakes made, but considering some of the pieces the team is missing to injury, this was still an impressive showing.

Richard Lagow represents Indiana’s best chance at making a bowl

I know I came on here after the Michigan game and said that Peyton Ramsey had a solid future, but injuries and typical inconsistencies you’d expect from young players have hurt him.

If IU’s end goal is to make a bowl, then Lagow needs to be the quarterback going forward. Yes, he made a terrible throw on his interception and yes he got lucky to have had a fumble as well, but he’s more familiar with the offense and looks more comfortable out there.

More importantly, he can pick apart defenses like Illinois’ and rutger’s. He finished 32-for-48 with 289 yards and a pair of scores today. I’m not sure Ramsey could reach that mark right now, even if fully healthy.

Still on track for a bowl

This was a must-win game and the Hoosiers won it. I’ve always contended that any road win in conference play is impressive, no matter the quality of the opponent.

Now, Indiana will have a home game against rutger that is a must-win. Good thing nothing bad has ever happened in a football game against them