Illinois and USF will play in a matchup of 2-0 teams. Charlie Strong’s No. 22 USF is coming off wins over San Jose State and Stony Brook, while Illinois beat Ball State and Western Kentucky.
Below, find the game time, TV channel, streaming and radio information for this Week 3 game.
USF-Illinois: Game time, details
Date: Friday, Sept. 15
Time: 7 p.m. ET
Location: Tampa, Fla.
Weather: High of 91, night thunderstorms
The line: USF by 17.5
What TV channel is USF-Illinois on?
The game will be broadcast on ESPN. Dave LaMont, Mack Brown and Jen Lada have the call.
How to stream USF-Illinois online
You can stream this game on WatchESPN.
How to listen to USF-Illinois on the radio
Head on over to the Fighting Illini Sports Network.
USF-Illinois game preview
Illinois and head coach Lovie Smith surprised many by stifling Western Kentucky 20-7 as home underdogs last Saturday.
Many assumed the Illini would struggle against the Hilltopper offense, which featured quarterback Mike White who averaged 311.6 passing yards per game last season. Last Saturday, Illinois limited him 238 yards and an interception, showing off a Lovie Smith defense which has a chance to be one of the Big Ten’s best.
Another positive from that 20-7 win was the emergence of running back Mike Epstine, who rushed for 111 yards on 21 carries and became a possible every-down option for the Illini in the backfield.
However, it doesn’t get easier for Illinois, as they travel to Tampa Bay to take on Charlie Strong’s USF Bulls for the right to improve to 3-0 and stay undefeated.
The Bulls flaunt senior quarterback Quinton Flowers, who leads a Bulls offense which has scored 73 points in the first two games of the season. Flowers has thrown for 389 yards so far this season, for four touchdowns and one interception with a 55.6 completion percentage.
Furthermore, Flowers is a dynamic dual-threat on the ground, as he commands a three-headed rushing attack with himself and senior running backs D’Ernest Johnson and Darius Tice. Together, Flowers, Johnson and Tice have rushed for 402 yards and six touchdowns.
If the Illinois defense isn’t on its A-game, its could find itself in a shootout with South Florida which would not be optimal for the Illini who have score 44 points in two games this season.
First-year starting quarterback Chayce Crouch has managed the offense effectively with a run game that boasts running back Kendrick Foster, as well as Epstine, and has an effective defense as its back up.
Crouch and the rest of the Illini offense will have to provide some points and control the time-of-possession battle in order to allow Lovie Smith’s defense to stay fresh and effective against the potent USF offense.