Illini Basketball 2019-2020

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Too many fliers over the last few years. Yes, two worked out, but if the level of recruiting is going to be projects and overseas players....it's going to be tough to be relevant. These issues are directly correlated with whiffing each fall. If they landed any of their top targets, they wouldn't be handing out scholarships to any warm body that will accept.
My thought is BU stays ahead of the curve, has plan a,b,c,and d.It didn't seem we've had that most recently, just because it's different doesn't make it wrong. I like the makeup of our team.
 
Look at this way: skool starts in 1-2 weeks. It's Hamlin or no one, basically. Pretty easy choice, IMO. He's effectively on a one year tryout. Sink or swim.
I know this is a natural way to think, but I feel for an 18 year old kid who’s just made likely the biggest decision of his life. He is the type of player who will benefit much more down the line from what he learns in the classroom over the next (hopefully) 4 years. The idea of “we’ll see if he makes it and if he doesn’t then we’ll scrap him” shows that we don’t always think of student-athletes as young men with their own set of goals and expectations about what this great university can and has promised to provide them. I hope we can keep this in sight :)
 
Some Perspective: Truth is that BU, excepting for injury, doesn't really want to play more than 9 - 10 (max) regular rotation players. That's where they are. Issue is potential injuries, and I agree, we're a little thin on the front line, but not as bad as last year when it was basically just Giorgi and some necessary pretenders. At this juncture, we will be reemploying some of the usual suspects to play out of position to a much lesser degree.
We willl be better than last year but that is a low bar. Need a third big to compete. Hopefully it is Verdonk if Kouma doesn't make it. Hamlin looks like a development player which still makes sense if he sticks around. Didn't happen with Ebo or Kane.
 

Deleted member 31586

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Are you kidding? You know our best player, only NBA prospect and key to our entire season is from Chicago....right? You do know that Chicago is one of the top one or two recruiting areas in the country, right? This program will never ever be able to sustain, what used to be, an elite tradition without recruiting this state and recruiting it well. Between Chicago and the surrounding suburbs, Peoria, East St. Louis, Belvidere, etc....there is a riches of talent unlike most other states and over the last five years....outside of Ayo, we've gotten none of it and have sucked each and every year.

Our last decent teams were led by Illinois based talent, Paul, Richardson, Egwu, Abrams....all Illinois kids. You look at our roster now....less Ayo, nothing.

There's a reason why we're at where we're at. We don't get our piece of the pie in our own state. For the flagship school to continually be left in the cold is a pure failure on behalf of the staff and the results back that up.

They can continue to scour all four corners of the US and the globe, but until they stop losing 3 of the top 5 recruits in the state to the likes if Iowa State(two years ago)....expect nothing but the same. To think it doesn't matter is pure lunacy.
You are on the money here. In order to play for it all, we have to have Kenny Battle, Kendal Gill, Nick Anderson, Deron, Luther type players. Do we have those type of players now, and will this kid even make it to the Jack Ingram level?

I don’t know the answer to the second question, but the first is a for sure no. Love Ayo (have no real good past player to compare him to?), think GB could be better than any player we ever have had with a 3 point shot (think Dirk). I really am high on AG as he looks like he can really score and has size. If TJ has a Luther Head moment and realizes he has to work and not just “party” he has the skill set, but let’s face it do we known if he has Luther’s work ethic? I have no idea?

So the question is, is nexts years team able to “play for it all”? I don’t see it? Now before i get my !!! chewed for being “glass half empty”, answer the next question what would it take to get there? I say 3 to 5 more Ayo/GB type players? Are we adding that type of players at the “ratio” we need presently? I don’t think so. If BU does not start hitting on class strings of 3 to 4 four star HS players or better year to year, we will never get much better than where we are now - thinking a 4th or 5th place finish in the B10 is good.

Fire away say, hey when your 14th in the league 5th is a hell of an improvement, but does it get us to 89, the early 2000’s or the 2005 teams? It does not. It is simple, BU has to start hitting on his Fall targets. If he does not, we need to realize we are now (just like football) hoping to get to the level of Iowa or Wisconsin. Very good programs, but I really don’t see either (I know Wisconsin has been to the final 4) as truly nation title contenders. This filling empty seats 10 days before class starts stuff is very new to us long time fans. Look back at any of Lou, Lon, Bill, or even Bruce’s HS classes (3 to 4 four star HS players) each and every year, and most from Illinois. We simply will never win without being able to get (not the superstars Duke will take those) but the Shannon’s, the Okoros, the 4 star players we seem to only have a pipe dream with now.
 
Are you kidding? You know our best player, only NBA prospect and key to our entire season is from Chicago....right? You do know that Chicago is one of the top one or two recruiting areas in the country, right? This program will never ever be able to sustain, what used to be, an elite tradition without recruiting this state and recruiting it well. Between Chicago and the surrounding suburbs, Peoria, East St. Louis, Belvidere, etc....there is a riches of talent unlike most other states and over the last five years....outside of Ayo, we've gotten none of it and have sucked each and every year.

Our last decent teams were led by Illinois based talent, Paul, Richardson, Egwu, Abrams....all Illinois kids. You look at our roster now....less Ayo, nothing.

There's a reason why we're at where we're at. We don't get our piece of the pie in our own state. For the flagship school to continually be left in the cold is a pure failure on behalf of the staff and the results back that up.

They can continue to scour all four corners of the US and the globe, but until they stop losing 3 of the top 5 recruits in the state to the likes if Iowa State(two years ago)....expect nothing but the same. To think it doesn't matter is pure lunacy.
Illinois had 1 kid in the top 150 in 2019. Talk all you want about recruiting in-state but all that matters is recruiting top talent and then developing that talent.

https://247sports.com/Season/2019-B...ankings/?InstitutionGroup=highschool&State=IL
 

IllFanInMi

I
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Illinois had 1 kid in the top 150 in 2019. Talk all you want about recruiting in-state but all that matters is recruiting top talent and then developing that talent.

https://247sports.com/Season/2019-B...ankings/?InstitutionGroup=highschool&State=IL
Down year this year in Illinois, however; Jacobs was a 4 star prior to ACL.

I reference MSU quite often, they had NINE Michigan kids on last years roster, and bringing in Rocket Watts, 4 star from
MI who played prep school in Ohio Sr. year. They sprinkle in highly rated national kids every year, but if Izzo didn’t make a priority of recruiting his state, well he would never have made it to Izzo status.

U of M typically has less in state kids as a %, but certainly do well in state. Michigan has more of a national name brand and does attract out of state kids more readily.

Point being, it is very rare for top Michigan kids to not end up at MSU or U OF M. Romeo Weems somehow ended up at DePaul this year and that move drew A LOT of head scratching.

Illinois doesn’t have to get them all, but they clearly have to do better!
 
Likes: TruIllini89
Madison, WI
It's mid-August. Would you rather have the schollie sit unused? Kouma was out of our control.

Our current recruiting station is far, far from where we all want it to be (and where it used to be). But we need to win.
Well there’s always the argument we get when we don’t use all of our scholarships that we could pick up a mid season transfer or something of the like. I don’t care either way, but I would rather our scholarships get used on guys I’ll be confident will still be here next year.
 
January >Kouma>Samba>Hamlin

AT least right now but I hope and wish Hamlin the best and he gets more skilled and polished as a redshirt. The other players might have seen some time or spot minutes but I doubt Hamlin will this season.

We have had some crappy luck trying to make changes and get players past the NCAA. Kouma is perplexing as he was 5th in his class and even recognized as a Scholar Athlete of the Week by a local TV station. I feel bad for him and wish all of the young men good luck.
 
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Likes: KevinC
Are we adding that type of players ...

Fire away
Recruiting is mixed, we've had some hits, and plenty of misses. Despite that, after a dismal start we had flashes last season. I think we'll get a valuable data point this season. Recruiting these days is as much a program thing as a coaching thing, and BU might need more help than he's getting. These late adds scare me.

I'm concerned about replacing Ayo. When the cupboard was bare, every high level player was a bonus. When you're losing elite talent, you need to do better.
 

Deleted member 31586

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Inth
Recruiting is mixed, we've had some hits, and plenty of misses. Despite that, after a dismal start we had flashes last season. I think we'll get a valuable data point this season. Recruiting these days is as much a program thing as a coaching thing, and BU might need more help than he's getting. These late adds scare me.

I'm concerned about replacing Ayo. When the cupboard was bare, every high level player was a bonus. When you're losing elite talent, you need to do better.
I think this is more than fair. We are doing better, but certainly not say top 10 - 20 recruiting in the country. That’s what it will take to ever be relevant on a national basis again.

I agree very much that recruiting has changed with transfers and a lack of state loyalty pretty much the norm. Still, recruiting 4 star HS talent used to be the norm for the UofI, now we bring in one project after another at the very end. GB is sort of a tease in that some people think you can do that all the time. I can’t really think of too many players that are like him? Kevin Turner (took him 4 years in the program)?

IMHO, it will be tough trying to win year in and year out with our current success ratio on our top Fall targets. Maybe we get lucky and Cockburn is the next Shaq? Outside of him putting up 25 and 15, I find it hard to place any higher than 4th in the league. We never would have been happy with 4th from day the 1980’s through 2005. This period has felt very much like the 1970’s for Illinois basketball. Pretty much a cluster all around.
 
Two reasons,

Follow the time line. Samba returns from Somalia, gushes in a video about muscle gain, looking forward to the season, blah, blah, blah.
Has 2 practices against Kofi which people closer to the program than me said were "eye opening".
Immediately announces a transfer, a matter of days before Italy.
The next morning on Saturday sports show, Tate says "this was all about playing time"
Later in the show people said that "people" back home were encouraging to find a spot with more playing time.


40 plus years ago, a first team all state player (you would know him, very well known) in my home town choose another Big over Illinois. In late August I bumped into his family who told me he felt he had been lied to and wished he had taken the Illinois offer. I had a friend who was very close to Lou and he carried the story to Lou.
Lou called my friend the next day and said basically that ship has sailed.

When you quit on a coach, they quit on you. Coaches tend to be a vindictive bunch.
 
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.
 
I'm okay with this one because a) we needed to fill the suddenly open scholarship from Kouma, b) with the Alexander connection, they know exactly what they're getting with this kid, his mental makeup, his potential, his fortitude, everything.
 
GB is sort of a tease in that some people think you can do that all the time. I can’t really think of too many players that are like him?
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.
 
Still not sure why we can't/or if we can't give Kouma a Schollie and let him practice like Lovett. NCAA is determining admission, only eligibility to play. Maybe that's still in the works.
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.
 
Likes: PJD86
Texas
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.
also we now have no 2019 scholarships left even if he became eligible
 
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