Illini Basketball 2018-2019

In 2017 we lost Morgan, Thorne, Hill, and Williams (Bigs) and gained Ebo, Vesel and Alstork. In 2018 we lost Black, Finke, Ebo, Alstork, and Vesel and gained DeLaRosa, Giorgi, Kane, Higgs and Jones. If DeLaRosa is healthy we are certainly plus to 2017-18 and possibly better than 2016-17 in the short term and with a higher ceiling long term. However still need a stud big to replace DeLaRosa to improve in future.
 
I usually hate when fans say dumb stuff like, "I actually prefer when we're not ranked," as positive publicity goes a long way for the perception of a program ... but given that we were never going to be lauded as particularly dangerous in the preseason anyway, I like this as some bulletin board material. I would be extremely disappointed and very surprised if we finish 13th.
 
Likes: foby
I think it's critical for the Illini to exceed expectations this season. I predict we will have one of the deepest and perhaps best back courts in the BIG. The major question is the front court good enough.
 
I think it's critical for the Illini to exceed expectations this season. I predict we will have one of the deepest and perhaps best back courts in the BIG. The major question is the front court good enough.
That is why consistency in recruiting every year is important. This backcourt will not last forever and It would be a pity not to be able to complement our backcourt with a very competent froncourt.
 
Likes: ChiefIllini
Anyways, I would've traded most of the roster to get rid of Groce. He just was not the answer here. You can deliver lottery picks at your school, but if you dont win, whats the point (Washington, LSU, and im sure others).
We did.

I also wouldn't put us in the category of Washington, LSU,... at the end of the day Groce still didn't get the job done on the recruiting front, we went way too long between pg & centers.
 
Brad Underwood at B1G Media Day

https://twitter.com/srrichey
Underwood: This is the youngest team I've been a part of since I've been a junior college coach and had a team every year of all freshmen. It's brought a youthful exuberance to our practices. #Illini

Underwood: We're developing an identity. That's something we've strived very hard for. #Illini

Underwood: Strength of schedule sure won't be a problem for us. #Illini

Underwood: I think we talk about being position-less and versatile. We have a lot of different pieces. We have a lot more size on the perimeter. This is a very good passing team. Our basketball IQ I'm having a lot of fun with because it's high. #Illini

Underwood: The one thing Trent Frazier has done is accepting some of the things he didn't do well. He's let us coach him. We asked him step up his leadership role, and he has done that. #Illini

Underwood: Ayo's a different guy. You talk about a dedicated, committed worker. He's everything I would have hoped him to be and more. Great, great teammate. He's selfless. #Illini
 
https://www.thechampaignroom.com/20...-lead-illini-fighting-illini-ncaa-trent-aaron

“Last year, we had a couple situations where guys didn’t want to be here,” said sophomore guard Trent Frazier on Thursday at Big Ten Media Day. “Some guys just went out there each night, just to play. They didn’t really want to help this team win.”

“This is the best locker room I’ve been in,” said senior Aaron Jordan. “Guys love to be around each other, love to hang out with each other, love to be on the court with each other. Coming into practice, you get to compete against your best friend, I get to compete against my brother, I get to compete against the guy I’m about to go to war with. Just buying into that and having that feeling, it’s amazing. I felt it. It was new for me, only because I haven’t been around that.”

This had me feeling extremely optimistic today. Call me crazy but I truly believe these mental things can be the difference between a win and a loss in some of the toss up games that we were in last year and will likely face again this year.
 
https://www.thechampaignroom.com/20...-lead-illini-fighting-illini-ncaa-trent-aaron

“Last year, we had a couple situations where guys didn’t want to be here,” said sophomore guard Trent Frazier on Thursday at Big Ten Media Day. “Some guys just went out there each night, just to play. They didn’t really want to help this team win.”

“This is the best locker room I’ve been in,” said senior Aaron Jordan. “Guys love to be around each other, love to hang out with each other, love to be on the court with each other. Coming into practice, you get to compete against your best friend, I get to compete against my brother, I get to compete against the guy I’m about to go to war with. Just buying into that and having that feeling, it’s amazing. I felt it. It was new for me, only because I haven’t been around that.”

This had me feeling extremely optimistic today. Call me crazy but I truly believe these mental things can be the difference between a win and a loss in some of the toss up games that we were in last year and will likely face again this year.
That quote from AJ is great to hear.
 
There is always some optimism at the beginning of the year, however what we are hearing now, seems to be different. Their seems to be a genuine interest from one player to another, an interest to represent the school, an interest to build a new legacy possibly. As BU stated, these young guys are and will be our foundation to get back to the level they expect to be at and we all expect/want them to achieve for themselves as well as we the fanbase!!! on with the season already!