Thanks to a breakout offensive performance, the 2013 Fighting Illini doubled their win total from 2012, going 4-8 overall. The Illini averaged nearly 30 points per game and jumped at least 50 spots in the national rankings from 2012 to 2013 in first downs, passing offense, long scrimmage plays, total offense, passing efficiency and scoring offense, with the biggest turnaround an 95-place jump in first downs per game.
Senior QB Nathan Scheelhaase was named second-team All-Big Ten after a record breaking season, leading the conference in total offense (295.2 ypg), passing yards (272.7 ypg), completions (23.9 cpg) and completion percentage (66.7), while breaking the Illinois single-season passing efficiency record (140.7). Senior LB Jonathan Brown also earned second-team All-Big Ten honors after leading the team and ranking second in the Big Ten in tackles (9.9 tpg) and ranking fourth in the conference with 15.0 TFLs.
The football team continues to excel in the classroom. A total of 42 players have earned degrees in Beckman's first two seasons and a record number of football student-athletes posted at least a 3.0 grade-point-average in back-to-back-to-back semesters - 39 in spring 2012, 42 in fall 2012 and 43 in spring 2013. The cumulative team grade-point average has risen dramatically since Beckman's arrival, going from 2.70 in fall 2012, to 2.87 in spring 2013 to 3.07 in fall 2013. In addition, 21 Fighting Illini earned Academic All-Big Ten status in fall 2013, up from 18 in fall 2012.