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WATCH: Mike Epstein breaks loose for a 43-yard touchdown.

His first quarter touchdown gave the Illini a 7-0 lead.

NCAA Football: Kent State at Illinois Mike Granse-USA TODAY Sports

The Illini got on the board first today thanks to sophomore running back Mike Epstein. The staff has used the running back sparingly to start the year after a foot injury forced him to miss the remainder of last season.

After backfield mate Reggie Corbin found a gap for 32 yards, Esptein followed his run up with a 43-yard touchdown of his own. The score gave Illinois a 7-0 lead.