UW holds a nine-game winning streak over the Illini as it heads to Champaign this weekend. 

Illinois has been dealing with injuries and inconsistent play from its quarterbacks. Brandon Peters, a junior Michigan transfer, missed last week’s game against the Wolverines due to a head injury. He’s questionable for Saturday. Peters was under center for Illinois in its best offensive performances this season, but is also prone to turnovers — he’s got four interceptions and two lost fumbles in five games.

UW punt returner Jack Dunn (above) was questionable to start the week due to a head injury sustained against the Spartans. Danny Davis filled that role last week, and could again against Illinois.

Lovie Smith hasn’t brought the success that Illinois hoped when it hired the longtime NFL coach, but he has gotten the defense turnover-minded.His seat is getting hotter, though, and an embarrassing Homecoming loss to the Badgers wouldn’t help.

UW players were kick to dismiss the notion of a trap game, or looking past the Illini with a big game against No. 4 Ohio State looming next week. Baun claimed he didn’t even know that the Buckeyes were next on the schedule after Illinois. A return to the road after five home games is unlikely to affect UW — Illinois is a combined 8-16 at home since 2016.

UW hasn’t allowed a point yet this month, and a third consecutive shutout is possible given how well the defense has been playing.