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Latest Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl News

Dienhart: Breaking down the Fight Hunger Bowl

Throughout the bowl season, senior writer Tom Dienhart offers his thoughts on the Big Ten’s record 10 bowl games. Find Dienhart’s reaction to Illinois’ victory over UCLA in the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl on Saturday night in this post. Final: Illinois 20, UCLA 14 My pick: Illinois 28, UCLA 17 What I Learned 1. The offense needs help. Illinois entered the game having scored just 17 first-half points in its previous six games. It managed to kick a field goal just before halftime to avoid more first-half misery. Still, the Illini need to fix a line that has struggled

Illinois' Whitney Mercilus

Illinois halts skid, beats UCLA 20-14

(AP) Terry Hawthorne returned an interception 39 yards for Illinois’ first touchdown late in the third quarter and the Illini snapped a six-game losing streak by beating UCLA 20-14 in the Fight Hunger Bowl.Nathan Scheelhaase added a 60-yard touchdown pass to A.J. Jenkins midway through the fourth quarter to seal the first victory for Illinois (7-6) since beating Indiana 12 weeks ago. The game between two six-win teams who have already fired their head coaches matched the underwhelming expectations as there was little excitement before Hawthorne’s third-quarter touchdown that gave Illinois its first lead. UCLA (6-8) was held to 18

Photos: 2011 Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl

We posted photos from the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl between Illinois and UCLA throughout the game. The Illini snapped their six-game losing streak in the 20-14 victory. Read the AP recap and see the photo gallery in this post. All photos courtesy of U.S. Presswire.

Fight Hunger Bowl Preview: Illinois vs. UCLA

Illinois raced out to 6-0 start and a national this season only to lose the next six games before Ron Zook was dismissed as head coach.  The Fighting Illini (6-6) take on UCLA (6-7) in the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl at 3:30 p.m. ET on Dec. 31. Like Illinois, UCLA fired their head coach this season. senior writer Tom Dienhart breaks down the game, gives his keys and offers his prediction. See it all in this post and find the entire 2011-12 bowl schedule. ILLINOIS (6-6) VS. UCLA (6-7) Storyline: Each school limps into this bowl with interim head

Dienhart: Odd protest for Illini assistant coaches

News that three Illinois assistant coaches may boycott Saturday’s Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl is disappointing, as reported late Friday by the Chicago Tribune. Joe Gilbert, Chip Long and Jeff Brohm may not coach in the bowl against UCLA on Saturday because they claim they were unaware that they had signed one-year deals. Instead, the trio says it had been told it had inked two-year contracts. At this point, it’s a he-said-he-said argument with seemingly little chance to be resolved with kickoff coming on Saturday afternoon. If the assistant coaches have come this far, why not just finish the job by

2 Illini ineligible for bowl game

Illinois announced Friday that senior running back Jason Ford and redshirt freshman wide receiver Jake Kumerow are academically ineligible under NCAA rules and will not participate in the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl. Ford lead Illinois with 600 rushing yards on 155 carries (3.9 ypc) and seven touchdowns. He finishes his career 1,962 career rushing yards, which ranks 16th on the all-time Illinois rushing list, and 26 career rushing touchdowns, which is second in Illinois history behind only Howard Griffith’s school record of 31. Kumerow played in seven games in 2011 and had three catches for 15 yards on the season.

Dienhart: Ranking the Bowls, from 1-35

The Poulan-Weedeater Bowl is long gone, unfortunately. But there is no shortage of bowl action. To get you ready for a holiday feast of 35 bowls, following is a ranking of the bowls from best to worst. With so many postseason games, you have to choose wisely with time at a minimum during this busy time of year. 1. All State BCS Title Game, Jan. 9: LSU vs. Alabama. It’s time to stop the criticism and embrace this for what it is—a matchup between the two best teams in America. And that’s exactly what the BCS formula is supposed to

Michigan's Brady Hoke

Dienhart: Quick Look at Big Ten Bowl Matchups

The Big Ten is bursting with bowl teams, as a record 10 schools are headed to the postseason. The Big Ten has two teams in the BCS for the seventh season in a row. And its 10 bowl eligible teams are the most since 2007. The conference will be looking for a better performance this year. Last season, the Big Ten started 2-0 in the postseason—then went 0-5 on New Year’s Day before Ohio State beat Arkansas in the Sugar Bowl, a victory that later was erased by OSU as part of NCAA sanctions. View the entire 2011-12 bowl schedule