Record: 7-4, 5-3 ACC
Coach: George Welsh, 18th year (128-79-3; 183-125-4)
Top Off. Player: RB Thomas Jones (1,798 yards, 16 TDs)
Top Def. Player: LB Shannon Taylor (81 tackles, 15 for loss)
The Cavaliers earned their 13th straight seven-win season under Welsh, thanks largely to Jones' Heisman-caliber year. The senior ran for over 210 yards in each of UVA's biggest wins, against BYU, N.C. State and Georgia Tech. QB Dan Ellis was impressive as well, coming back to beat Maryland the final week after missing two games to injury.
|Aug 25||Both Olsen brothers leave Notre Dame||
Record: 7-4, 4-4 Big Ten
Coach: Ron Turner, third year (10-23)
Top Off. Player: QB Kurt Kittner (2,448 yards, 22 TDs to 4 INTs)
Top Def. Player: LB Danny Clark (115 tackles, 11 for loss)
Two years removed from an 0-11 season, Illinois returns to a bowl for the first time in five years. Its season included the near-unthinkable feat of winning at both Michigan and Ohio State. The keys to the Illini's four-win improvement from '98 were the emergence of Kittner, a sophomore, as a legitimate Big Ten quarterback, and the double-running threat of Rocky Harvey and Steve Havard.
|Aug 26||Illinois fullback Davis to miss opener|