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Mike Epstein out for season with knee injury

Epstein went down with a season ending knee-injury against Akron.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 15 USF at Illinois Photo by Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Mike Epstein will miss the rest of the season after sustaining a injury against Akron on Saturday. Epstein appeared in only seven games last year before a sustaining a knee injury ending his sophomore campaign.

”Mike Epstein went down with a season-ending injury,” said head coach Lovie Smith. “He’s been through so much. As is the case with Marquez Beason, these are guys that will come back as strong as ever.”

Originally recruited in the the Beckman regime, Epstein shined his freshman year when he tied for the team lead in touchdowns (4). As an Illini, Epstein has rushed for over 800 yards and scored six touchdowns in the only 13 games he’s played.

“Mike has a lot of eligibility left, and he’ll come back strong as ever,” Smith said.

Epstein has been a pivotal part of the running back depth chart this season that included Reggie Corbin, Dre Brown and Ra’Von Bonner. Lovie will have to look for the other guys to step-up the rest of the season.