Illinois got its 2019 season under way in a tremendous way.

The Fighting Illini faced Akron at home and despite some people thinking the Zips could pull the upset — as they have done to Power 5 schools before — Illinois won the game 42-3. That’s right, by 39 points. It was a great start to the season.

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What wasn’t great, however, was the injury that RB Mike Epstein endured. Epstein came on in a major way in his first two seasons by posting a 6.1 yards per carry average as a freshman and a 6.9 yards per carry average as a sophomore. The issue with Epstein, however, has always been staying healthy.

During the game against Akron in Week 1, Epstein ended up leaving the game with a knee injury and on Monday, coach Lovie Smith gave an update during his weekly press conference:

Epstein is out for the remainder of the season with a knee injury. It is now his third straight season that will come to an early end due to injury.