|1923 Illinois Fighting Illini football|
|Conference||Big Ten Conference|
|Record||8–0 (5–0 Big Ten)|
|Home stadium||Illinois Field|
|1923 Big Ten Conference football standings|
The 1923 Illinois Fighting Illini football team was an American football team that represented the University of Illinois during the 1923 Big Ten Conference football season. In their 11th season under head coach Robert Zuppke, the Fighting Illini compiled an 8–0 record (5–0 against Big Ten Conference opponents), tied with Michigan for the Big Ten championship, shut out five of eight opponents, and outscored their opponents by a total of 136 to 20.
There was no contemporaneous system in 1923 for determining a national champion. However, Illinois was retroactively named as the national champion by the Boand System, College Football Researchers Association, Helms Athletic Foundation, and Parke H. Davis, and as a co-national champion by the Berryman QPRS system, National Championship Foundation, and Jeff Sagarin (using the ELO-Chess methodology).
Halfback Red Grange, known as "The Galloping Ghost", tallied 723 rushing yards and scored 12 touchdowns in seven games. In 2008, Grange was named by ESPN as the best college football player of all time. He was also a charter member of both the College and Pro Football Halls of Fame.
Grange and Guard Jim McMillen were consensus first-team picks on the 1923 All-America college football team. McMillen was also the team captain.
This was the first season for the Fighting Illini at Memorial Stadium, where the team plays their home games to this day.
|October 6||Nebraska*||W 24–7|||
|October 13||Butler*||W 21–7|||
|October 20||at Iowa||W 9–6||25,000|||
|October 27||vs. Northwestern||W 29–0||32,000|||
|November 3||Chicago||W 7–0||61,000|||
|November 10||Wisconsin||W 10–0||30,000|||
|November 17||Mississippi A&M*||W 27–0||25,000|||
|November 24||at Ohio State||W 9–0||42,000|||
|Steve Coutchie||Quarterback||Senior||Harvey, Illinois|
|Harry 'Swede' Hall||Quarterback||Senior||Chicago, Illinois|
|Red Grange||Halfback||Senior||Wheaton, Illinois|
|Wally McIlwain||Wingback/Halfback||Sophomore||Evanston, Illinois|
|Earl Britton||Fullback/Placekicker/Punter||Sophomore||Elgin, Illinois|
|Bill Hansen||Fullback||Junior||Brookston, Indiana|
|Heinie Schultz||End||Junior||Geneseo, Illinois|
|Ted Richards||End||Junior||Glencoe, Illinois|
|Frank Edward Rokusek||End||Senior||Omaha, Nebraska|
|Clarence Arthur Muhl||End||Senior||Oskaloosa, Iowa|
|Gilbert Jay Roberts||Center||Senior||Oskaloosa, Iowa|
|Vee Green||Center||Senior||Waukegan, Illinois|
|Roy Andrew Miller||Tackle||Sophomore||Urbana, Illinois|
|Chuck Addison Brown||Tackle||Sophomore||Cissna Park, Illinois|
|Richard 'Dick' Hall||Tackle||Senior||Logansport, Indiana|
|John Mauer||Tackle||Sophomore||Batavia, Illinois|
|Bunny Oakes||Tackle||Senior||Maywood, Illinois|
|Mush Crawford||Tackle||Sophomore||Waukegan, Illinois|
|Jim McMillen||Right Guard||Senior||Grayslake, Illinois|
|Louis Frederick Slimmer||Guard||Senior||Millville, New Jersey|
|Leonard J. Umnus||Guard||Junior||Menominee, Michigan|
The following Illinois players received honors on the 1923 All-America college football team and/or the 1923 All-Big Ten Conference football team: