LINCOLN, Neb. -- Ameer Abdullah ran for a career-high 225 yards and two touchdowns and Nebraska's maligned defense was much improved in a 39-19 victory over Illinois on Saturday.
Tommy Armstrong, starting his second straight game in place of injured quarterback Taylor Martinez, led the Cornhuskers (4-1, 1-0 Big Ten) to touchdowns on his first three series and was solid throughout.
Armstrong was 8 of 13 for 135 yards.
Just as big as Armstrong's performance was that of Nebraska's defense, which had been one of the nation's worst through four games.
Illinois (3-2, 0-1), which came in averaging 40 points a game, didn't score its first touchdown until the middle of the third quarter. Twice when the Illini looked as if they would make a game of it, the Huskers made big stops.
Josh Ferguson led the Illini with 114 yards on 19 carries and another 82 yards on eight catches.
Where there were once potential fires, such as Scott calling out UCLA AD Dan Guerrero, things are now cool in the Pac-12. Or at least cooler.
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