Boilermakers keep bowl hopes alive with win
Illinois loses eighth straight game
Purdue 20, Illinois 17: Akeem Shavers rushed for 99 yards and a touchdown as the visiting Boilermakers kept their postseason bowl hopes alive with a victory over the struggling Fighting Illini.
With its second straight win, Purdue (5-6, 2-5 Big Ten) needs to beat archrival Indiana at home next Saturday to secure bowl eligibility. Illinois (2-9, 0-7 Big Ten) lost its eighth straight game, and also lost three fumbles.
With the Boilermakers leading 13-10 late in the third quarter, Shavers scored on a 6-yard run to put Purdue up 10. Illinois would get within 20-17 with 3:28 left in the game, but the Boilermakers recovered the onside kick and then picked up a pair of first downs to seal the win.
Purdue's Robert Marve passed for 173 yards and had a 63-yard touchdown pass to Akeem Hunt, while Nathan Scheelhaase threw for 160 yards and ran for another 76, including a touchdown, for Illinois.
GAME NOTEBOOK: Purdue has won back-to-back Big Ten road games for the first time since 2007. ... Illinois has lost five straight years on Senior Day. ... Purdue has won seven of the last eight meetings.