New Cincinnati Bearcats head coach Tommy Tuberville inherited an ongoing quarterback controversy, with returners Munchie Legaux and Brendan Kay both starting in 2012. Legaux got the start in the Bearcats’ Week 1 rout of Purdue as well as Saturday’s matchup with Illinois, but a 2-of-6 passing start with an interception prompted Tuberville to bench Legaux for Kay.
Brendan Kay in for Cincinnati
— Jeremy Werner (@WernerESPNCU) September 7, 2013
Illinois parlayed Legaux’s interception into the game’s first score, as Illini quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase uncorked a 48-yard touchdown pass to Josh Ferguson in stride. Scheelhaase had an outstanding first half in Illinois’ Week 1 win over Southern Illinois, passing for over 380 yards and validating head coach’s Tim Beckman to choose Scheelhaase in the Illini’s own quarterback competition.
The senior shared starts with Reilly O’Toole in 2012, similar to Legaux and Kay. Scheelhaase struck for a second score to Evan Wilson, putting the Illini ahead 21-0 late in the half.
After falling behind two scores, Tuberville reinserted Legaux, who completed his first four pass attempts upon returning and hooked up with Max Morrison for a touchdown strike.
Munchie Legaux led the Bearcats’ first scoring drive just before halftime, rushing for 31 yards and picking up four of UC’s five first downs on the possession. Kay also appeared on the drive, suggesting a situational, two-quarterback look from the Bearcats.