To most college football fans and media, Illinois’ 4-1 start is a big surprise. To Bret Bielema, it’s no surprise.

In his return to Madison, Bielema thrashed Wisconsin 34-10, and now the Illini now have questions about whether or not they can compete and maintain the success, even against the B1G’s best.

On the back of the nation’s leading rusher, Bielema has no reason to doubt given what his squad has done so far. The physicality that they have showed allows them to compete with anyone if they can stick to that brand of football. Quarterback Tommy DeVito muscled his way to 3 1-yard touchdowns.

On top of that, the Illinois defense held one of the nation’s premier rushers in Braelon Allen to a measly 2 yards on 8 carries.

Bielema and the Illini will get a chance to continue holding the standard against one of the most physical teams in the country in Iowa in Week 5.