Illini Basketball 2019-2020

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Carbondale, IL
It's no easy thing with a 13-man roster to both:

1. Use all your scholarships, and

2. Have a clear, workable rotation of guys that actually play.

It would now appear that we've done that. Two sit-out years, only a light sprinkling of Hamlin and BBV as necessary, and everybody else is gonna get regular minutes.
No easy thing, but this regime has made number 1 look downright Sisyphean so far*.

*Edit: Should say "until now". I didn't know that other transfer had committed. Well let's do this! Full roster!
 
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I can't think of anyone like him. We've had impact freshman before, but an impact big that came into a position of desperate need, totally off the radar, unheralded, and then filled that need with skill, heart, and character, and leadership? He's beyond words.
Right in the money Calvin. I really struggle to think of any player like GB? Turner was a stretch and a bad one? I mean really what 2 or 3 star any player have we ever had come in a perform like him?

I know Ayo is a pro. Thought a lot about a comparison - Shawn Livingston?

GB I really feel with a shot out to three point line makes him a player who is a total nightmare to defend. Also, with his really dance moves and footwork he really has the potential to be one of the best players ever to play here. Maybe the best ever? He has, I think, Dirk like skills. His post moves are better than Happ’s now, and Happ is pretty damn good.

If GB, develops like I think he will, and he stays 3 to 4 years his potential is simply crazy. Not to mention he is so likable and his story is a made for TV movie. We may never see a player like him again?
 
Right in the money Calvin. I really struggle to think of any player like GB? Turner was a stretch and a bad one? I mean really what 2 or 3 star any player have we ever had come in a perform like him?

I know Ayo is a pro. Thought a lot about a comparison - Shawn Livingston?

GB I really feel with a shot out to three point line makes him a player who is a total nightmare to defend. Also, with his really dance moves and footwork he really has the potential to be one of the best players ever to play here. Maybe the best ever? He has, I think, Dirk like skills. His post moves are better than Happ’s now, and Happ is pretty damn good.

If GB, develops like I think he will, and he stays 3 to 4 years his potential is simply crazy. Not to mention he is so likable and his story is a made for TV movie. We may never see a player like him again?
Ehh..Livingston was a passer, playmaker. Think this is something Ayo has to develop.
 
Likes: KevinC
Winged Warrior
C'mon, this is next level recruiting! Think about it.....use the scholly.....get a project big that will get to learn behind GB and Kofi....get Fletched......and build some hometown excitement! Ninja recruiting!

Happy for a local kid to generate some backyard Illini excitement! I have zero problem with this.
 
Likes: Dren1
Right in the money Calvin. I really struggle to think of any player like GB? Turner was a stretch and a bad one? I mean really what 2 or 3 star any player have we ever had come in a perform like him?

I know Ayo is a pro. Thought a lot about a comparison - Shawn Livingston?

GB I really feel with a shot out to three point line makes him a player who is a total nightmare to defend. Also, with his really dance moves and footwork he really has the potential to be one of the best players ever to play here. Maybe the best ever? He has, I think, Dirk like skills. His post moves are better than Happ’s now, and Happ is pretty damn good.

If GB, develops like I think he will, and he stays 3 to 4 years his potential is simply crazy. Not to mention he is so likable and his story is a made for TV movie. We may never see a player like him again?
Cory Bradford was a stud right away i think? i cant recall it has been a while!
 
Ehh..Livingston was a passer, playmaker. Think this is something Ayo has to develop.
Bigger too, and more explosive.

Ayo is probably a better shooter than Livingston was at that stage though, even if he's not a great one.

Pre-injury Livingston was an absurd talent and probably a jump shot away from NBA superstardom, it's no slight to Ayo to say he's not on that level.
 
I really struggle to think of any player like GB? Turner was a stretch and a bad one? I mean really what 2 or 3 star any player have we ever had come in a perform like him?
There's a different vibe to it since Ethan Happ arrived at Wisconsin playing like an NBA-prime Kevin McHale, whereas Giorgi was more like a teenage Marvel superhero freshly discovering the extent of his superpowers, but both were lightly recruited big guys who made immediate impacts with their unusual, preternatural skill levels. Great feet on both, and neither could shoot.
 
Set the scoring record as a redshirt freshman. I don’t recall the reason for redshirting.
Back then they called it partial academic qualifier. Basically, redshirted Freshman year and still played 4 after that. He and Frank fell in that category.
Bradford is still playing professionally in China 17 years later.
 
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Likes: Bubba Eder
The hand wringing over the roster on this site baffles me. We have our best front court since Miles Leonard, and Nanna Egwu. Kofi and GB have a realistic ceiling this year that surpasses both the Leonard/Egwu, Davis/Tisdale, and the Augustine/Ingram/Chainsaw teams. Everyone should be pleased right now, imo.

We'll be playing smaller towards the end of our bench. We'll struggle defending the post if GB/Kofi are in foul trouble. So, what? This team will not win the national championship. It is flawed like every other team. Speaking of championship, Luther Powell was our starting "4" at 6' 6".

My point being - this team's ultimate success isn't going to come down to whether or not Samba, or Spicy G, or Jermaine Hamlin, or Verdonk, or Tevian play backup 4, and spot 5 minutes.
 
This team will be ncaa bound and top 4 in BIG if:
1 kofi plays like a man, and
2 one of tev, griff, or kipp steps up.
 
This team will be ncaa bound and top 4 in BIG if:
1 kofi plays like a man, and
2 one of tev, griff, or kipp steps up.
Or verdonk.. . I think he is gonna surprise as a shooter and on the glass I know out of those four who is more likely to bang and get a rebound. I heard it in Ayos voice when he talked about him
 
Likes: chiefini
Captain Trips-ville, Planet Houston
Or verdonk.. . I think he is gonna surprise as a shooter and on the glass I know out of those four who is more likely to bang and get a rebound. I heard it in Ayos voice when he talked about him
Verdonk looks like a guy who's been in the program for a couple of years. And had a good frame/physique to start. If his game approaches his physique, look out!
 
NW Suburbs
Did some more digging and it looks like Illinois will face Lewis in an exhibition on nov 1st
 
Western Suburbs
A dad of an Illinois student showed me an email listing the Dad’s Day weekend activities. I agree that I thought it was an error and a mix up from last year’s exhibition game but the email listed Illinois Wesleyan as the opponent on the Friday before the Rutgers football game. Maybe the email was wrong.
 
Likes: illinitrav
If he cannot be admitted he is not a member of the team and cannot prctice. It's not a matter of what type of scholarship he gets - if he does not meet the academic eligibility requirements he will not be allowed to enroll regardless of whether he plays basketball.
I thought he was admitted to Illinois as he is listed on the roster. Don't believe NCAA can stop his enrollment just his eligibility..
 
Is Hamlin about the same as Ebo coming in? Looks athletic with some size but guessing he doesn't have great skills.
 
Is Hamlin about the same as Ebo coming in? Looks athletic with some size but guessing he doesn't have great skills.
I actually thought he had good footwork, but his touch around the rim seemed to be an area of improvement. Seems like a defensive minded guy which to me is always a great option especially if we have more athletic wings/PG as primary scoring options, you need a big guy that can help get some of those offensive and defensive rebounds and keep their centers honest while protecting the rim from driving point guards. I would think if he did all those things without scoring, we would be happy with that....for now. He's not a center of the future, but he is an option and I"m all about keeping options open to be able to play BU's style. Fast yet disciplined.
 
Is Hamlin about the same as Ebo coming in? Looks athletic with some size but guessing he doesn't have great skills.
On par with Ebo, both defensive minded. Ebo may have been slightly better coming in. I think Hamlin benefits from the future Kofi physicality and the future dance classes with Giorgi....look for his touch and moves to improve around the hoop.
 
Likes: Mike55
The hand wringing over the roster on this site baffles me. We have our best front court since Miles Leonard, and Nanna Egwu. Kofi and GB have a realistic ceiling this year that surpasses both the Leonard/Egwu, Davis/Tisdale, and the Augustine/Ingram/Chainsaw teams. Everyone should be pleased right now, imo.

We'll be playing smaller towards the end of our bench. We'll struggle defending the post if GB/Kofi are in foul trouble. So, what? This team will not win the national championship. It is flawed like every other team. Speaking of championship, Luther Powell was our starting "4" at 6' 6".

My point being - this team's ultimate success isn't going to come down to whether or not Samba, or Spicy G, or Jermaine Hamlin, or Verdonk, or Tevian play backup 4, and spot 5 minutes.
Ah yes, Miles Leonard and Luther Powell. A couple of my all time favorite Illini!
 
Fairfield, IL
I actually thought he had good footwork, but his touch around the rim seemed to be an area of improvement. Seems like a defensive minded guy which to me is always a great option especially if we have more athletic wings/PG as primary scoring options, you need a big guy that can help get some of those offensive and defensive rebounds and keep their centers honest while protecting the rim from driving point guards. I would think if he did all those things without scoring, we would be happy with that....for now. He's not a center of the future, but he is an option and I"m all about keeping options open to be able to play BU's style. Fast yet disciplined.
Someone on this board said it earlier and I was thinking the same thing, but if Hamlin turns out to be like a Nnanna Egwu-type, I'm all for it. As we all know, Nnanna was a great rim protector. He has promise and adds depth to the frontcourt which was needed.
 
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