The Maryland Terrapins took all of the fight out of the Illinois Fighting Illini, destroying them 63-33 much to the delight of the home crowd who enjoyed the convincing victory over gray skies at Maryland Stadium.
The unexpected offensive star for the Terps (5-3, 3-2 Big Ten) was backup running back Javon Leake who had the game of a lifetime.
He rushed for a career-high 140 yards and scored a career-high four touchdowns on runs of 64, 43 and 27 yards as well as having a 97-yard kick off return for another touchdown which gave Maryland a 7-3 lead with 11:41 to go in the first quarter.
Terps quarterback Kasim Hill also had his best game under center throwing for 265 yards while connecting on 11 of 19 passing attempts, three for touchdowns.
Jeshaun Jones rushed for 68 yards on three carries and a touchdown and also caught three passes for 36 yards and a touchdown.
The list of Maryland offensive performers went on and on as tight end Chigoziem Okonkwo caught one pass for a 25-yard touchdown and had a 54-yard rushing touchdown.
Maryland running back Anthony McFarland rushed for 83 yards on 16 attempts as the Terps finished the game with an astounding 712 yards on offensive and averaged nine yards per rushing attempt.
Maryland had the ball for 34:15 minutes compared to 25:45 for the Fighting Illini and were an incredible 12 of 15 on third down efficiency.
Illinois started the scoring taking a 3-0 lead on a 32-yard field goal with 11:45 to go in the first quarter.
After that it was all Maryland as they scored at least 14 points in each quarter.
Leake’s kickoff return gave Maryland a 7-3 lead and they followed that up with a Hill 46-yard scoring strike to Jahrvis Davenport to take a 14-3 lead with 4:48 to go in the first quarter.
The Fighting Illini added a 34-yard field goal to cut the Maryland lead to 14-6 but Maryland responded with a Leake 64-yard scoring burst to take a 21-6 advantage with 11:31 to play in the second quarter.
Illinois kept settling for field goals adding a 39-yarder to cut the Terps lead to 21-9.
Maryland fought back with a Hill 14-yard touchdown pass to Jones to take a 28-9 lead into the halftime break.
At the start of the second half the Fighting Illini continued to have to settle for field goals as they added a 26-yarder to reduce the Maryland lead to 28-12 with 10:52 to go in the third quarter.
The rest of the third quarter belonged to the Terps as they scored 21 point including a Jones 43-yard run, a Leake 27-yard dash and Okonkwo’s 25-yard scoring pass from Hill to take a commanding 49-12 lead with 54 seconds to go in the third quarter.
Illinois finally got a touchdown on a 69-yard run from Reggie Corbin to reduce the Maryland lead to 49-19 with 42 seconds to play in the third quarter but that did nothing to stop the Maryland scoring onslaught.
Maryland added a Leake 43-yard scoring dash to take a 56-19 lead.
The Fighting Illini added two late touchdowns to cut the Maryland lead to 56-33 with 6:35 remaining to be played in the game.
Maryland again came right back and Okonkwo’s 54-yard touchdown run gave them a 63-33 lead with 47 seconds to go and sending the home crowd home happy.
Illinois backup quarterback AJ Bush finished 11 of 19 for 216 yards and two touchdowns and one interception while replacing starter M.J. Rivers II who was knocked out of the game on a targeting hit.
Corbin led Illinois with 155 yards on 18 carries and one touchdown and Dominic Stampley led the receivers with 153 yards on fours catches while scoring two touchdowns in a losing effort for the (3-5, 1-4 Big Ten) Fighting Illini.