From mockery to magic at Wrigley

Leshoure Runs Wild At Wrigley (1:45)

Illinois RB Mikel Leshoure ran for 330 yards and two TDs as the Illini beat Northwestern 48-27. (1:45)

CHICAGO -- Go figure. Illinois turned a potential circus into a spectacle.

In one potentially disastrous afternoon, the Fighting Illini and one very special running back elevated a PR stunt gone awry into a must-see performance. They walked into a purple haze at Clark and Addison on Saturday and ran off with a school record, a bowl berth, a much-needed measure of pride and, very likely, their coach's job secured.

Illinois' 48-27 victory over Northwestern, made possible by Mikel Leshoure's school- and Wrigley Field-record 330 yards rushing, rose above circumstances that threatened to embarrass both schools, the Big Ten Conference, the Cubs and whoever else was unlucky enough to be involved.

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