Bradley Leeb-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

Penn State vs. Illinois: Illini try to bounce back from ugly loss

The Illini coach had to field plenty of questions about Ryan Nowicki on Monday ahead of Saturday's clash with the Penn State Nittany Lions. Nowicki has not played since his transfer to Illinois.

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Illinois to start Nathan Scheelhaase at QB

Illinois quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase will remain the starter for the Illini's upcoming game against Penn State despite getting pulled in the first quarter of Illinois' 52-24 loss to Louisiana Tech. Scheelhaase missed two games with a sprained ankle and was benched after throwing an interception and losing a fumble in the first quarter against Louisiana Tech.

Scheelhaase was replaced by Reilly O'Toole who went 19-for-25 with 120 yards, but Illinois coach Tim Beckman declared that Scheelhaaase was still his man on Monday, saying "Nathan Scheelhaase is our starting quarterback." Scheelhaase took a big hit on the first play of the game, but Beckman gave him a few more series before deciding it was in the team's best interest to bench him and bring in O'Toole.

Illinois stands at 2-2 on the season and travels to Happy Valley to take on Penn State (2-2) in the Big Ten opener on Saturday.

For more on Illinois football, visit SB Nation Chicago. Check out Off Tackle Empire for all your Big Ten news.


Ta'Jarvis Fuller has left Illinois

Ta'Jarvis Fuller has reportedly left the Illinois football team after a violation of team rules. is reporting that Fuller has voluntarily withdrawn from the university. Illinois head football coach Tim Beckman did not discuss the specifics of the incident with the media.

Fuller was listed as a backup at the "star" position, which is a hybrid of the linebacker and safety positions in the Illinois system. He was limited during the team's pre-season with a broken hand, but he did see some snaps when Illinois played Charleston Southern on Sept. 15.

Fuller was a Parade All-American in high school, and had him rated as a three-star prospect. He was recruited by Big Ten rivals Wisconsin and Indiana along with ACC schools Georgia Tech and Maryland before settling on Illinois. He enrolled in the spring and participated during the Illini's spring practices.

For more on Illini football, visit Illinois blog Hail To The Orange, plus Big Ten blog Off Tackle Empire and SB Nation Chicago.

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