Q: (A question on the defensive gameplan for Illinois)
Drew Tate: They did a good job. Once we got into the fourth quarter and we were in certain personnel groups, we were able to just 4 yards, 4 yards, 4 yards. All that other stuff, it's hard because of what people are doing against us.
Q: Is it hard to approach next week as just another ball game?
Tate: I don't think so. I think obviously it's a huge game for us, as it is for them. The second in the Big Ten. Our thing was to start fast in September, and we're 4-0, we've got one more to go.
Q: Will it be fun, night game, national TV?
Tate: I think it's going to be great for the university, yeah.
Q: What kind of grade would you give yourself?
Tate: I thought I did a poor job at the beginning with my intensity and my focus. It came back up in the 2nd quarter, then after that we just started, in the second half, we weren't in sync as much as we should have been. When we needed it, I think we did a good job.
Q: A lot of running backs in the back field.
Tate: Yeah, they did a good job. We've got very good tail backs. I think we've got really good fullbacks too. They did a really good job of picking up blitzes and stuff like that. I think we only missed one. I think Shonn just hit him and then I don't know. Shonn usually doesn't do that. I know Albert picked up some guys. I'm sure Damian and Busch did too. I thought they did the best they could running. Illinois made it extremely hard, they had us scouted pretty well as far as how to take our run game away.
Q: Dominique Douglas was there when Chandler was covered.
Tate: Yeah. Dominique did a good job sitting down. He's real smart. He and Chandler are real smart, they know how to play, they know what to do. They did a great job.
Q: Was this game tougher than you thought?
Tate: We knew it was going to be this tough. Reading quotes about what Illinois was saying, they were talking about how they do extra pushups and sit-ups and all that stuff for us. This is their Big Ten opener game, we're coming there, we'd beaten them the last 3 years prior to this. We knew it was going to be tough. Every Big Ten game is tough. I don't remember not playing in a tough Big Ten game when I've been here.