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The nation's leading rusher and a stout defense pose challenges for Iowa in matchup with Illinois

The Iowa Hawkeyes have had a lot of success over the past couple decades when facing Illinois, winning 16 of their last 19 meetings.

IOWA CITY, Iowa — The Michigan defense got the best of Iowa on Saturday, resulting in a 27-14 loss for the Hawkeyes. They'll face another stout defense when they go up against Illinois this weekend. 

Iowa currently has an eight game win streak against the Fighting Illini. During that streak, the Hawkeyes have won by an average of 22.4 points.

Iowa and Illinois have a couple things in common — they both have elite defenses and they like to run the ball.

Illinois has the nation's leading rusher, Chase Brown, as well as the nation's top defense when it comes to points allowed per game.

That'll make it especially challenging for an Iowa offense that already struggles to put points on the board.

"I feel like that's their main focus is to stop the run," said Iowa running back Leshon Williams. "They bring in an extra guy. They put a lot of responsibility on the extra guy that they bring in to make the tackles."

"The key thing I think is they're well coached and they know where to be and when to be there, that type of thing," added Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz. "So, they don't leave big seams for you. It's hard to create them so that's gonna be our challenge and I'm sure they'll have a wrinkle or two."

Illinois will host Iowa on Saturday, Oct. 8 at 6:40 p.m. at Memorial Stadium in Champaign, Illinois.

RELATED: Corum, McCarthy lead No. 4 Michigan past Iowa, 27-14

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