Illinois is becoming one of the most surprising teams in the B1G this 2022 season after starting with a 4-1, and they can thank its defense for that. Through the first five games of the season, Illinois’ defense has given up a total of 42 points, the least amount in a five-game span since 1950.

Illinois possesses the top-scoring defense in the nation as they allow an average of 8.4 points per game. They are also ranked third in the nation in total yards allowed per game (228), just behind James Madison and Minnesota.

Ryan Walters has created a highly efficient defense in his second season as the defensive coordinator for Illinois.

The Fighting Illini possess three defenders that have accumulated three sacks throughout the season, one player that has accounted for three interceptions, and two more that have accounted for at least seven pass breakups.