LINCOLN, Neb. -- Ameer Abdullah ran for a career-high 225 yards and two touchdowns and Nebraska's maligned defense was much improved in a 39-19 victory over Illinois on Saturday.
Tommy Armstrong, starting his second straight game in place of injured quarterback Taylor Martinez, led the Cornhuskers (4-1, 1-0 Big Ten) to touchdowns on his first three series and was solid throughout.
Armstrong was 8 of 13 for 135 yards.
Just as big as Armstrong's performance was that of Nebraska's defense, which had been one of the nation's worst through four games.
Illinois (3-2, 0-1), which came in averaging 40 points a game, didn't score its first touchdown until the middle of the third quarter. Twice when the Illini looked as if they would make a game of it, the Huskers made big stops.
Josh Ferguson led the Illini with 114 yards on 19 carries and another 82 yards on eight catches.
With starting quarterback Thomas Sirk out indefinitely with a torn Achilles, Duke will turn to Parker Boehme to lead the offense.
Kentucky will have to replace five starters on defense in 2016, and its deep recruiting class should help address the need.
A group of transfer quarterbacks and the top wide receiver recruit in the country are among those who could emerge to make a big impact in the Pac-12.
Now is the perfect time to take a closer look at the strength and weakness of each Big 12 team after signing day, beginning with Baylor.
With signing day behind us, here's an early look at how teams stack up in the Pac-12 heading into next season.
The Spartans went into signing day needing to get stronger at receiver, and they did just that, signing four wideouts including two in the ESPN 300.