Illinois Hoping to Make Big Statement at North Carolina

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CHAMPAIGN -- The Illini have started the Bill Cubit era off with a bang. They've outscored their first two opponents 96 to 3. But they still have a lot to prove.

"We're supposed to blow them out," senior defensive end Jihad Ward said. "We're supposed to blow Kent State and Western Illinois out."

Illinois knows their first big test of the season awaits them Saturday in Chapel Hill.

"It's a tone setter," junior linebacker T.J. Neal said. "I think the first two games were great but I believe this one (game against UNC) will let everyone know that the fighting Illini are not playing this year."

Illinois (2-0) and North Carolina (1-1) will kick off Saturday at 11 AM CT. It's only the third ever meeting between the two schools, and the first since 1987.

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