Illini Basketball 2019-2020

How well Illini play defense when not getting turnovers will be key. The answer to that question last year was not very well. The numbers escape me but the percentage of shots taken and made in the paint by the opposition was high. Cockburn, should help that when he's in. When he's out?
Hamlin.......he should be getting some lessons from GB and Kofi! Both skilled but in vastly different ways. Welcome to the BIG. Maybe a little BBV....
(Hopefully).
 
Were counting on those lucky ones that get to go to this practice, to give us your insights! Thanks ahead of time!
 
Likes: jmilt7
This makes me kind if chuckle. We used to sit in Huff's balcony and watch Lou finish up practice all the time waiting for open gym at Huff from 4 -6. It was pretty cool to see that intense side of Lou back in the day.
 
Likes: krushdad
This makes me kind if chuckle. We used to sit in Huff's balcony and watch Lou finish up practice all the time waiting for open gym at Huff from 4 -6. It was pretty cool to see that intense side of Lou back in the day.
I did the same thing, except it was Harv Schmidt. Somehow his intensity never quite paid off like Lou’s did.
 
Glenview, IL
I know, I know, practice reports, but I thought there were some interesting tidbits in here:

https://247sports.com/college/illinois/Article/Illinois-Fighting-Illini-basketball-Brad-Underwood-2019-20-preview-media-day-136790528/

Most interesting to me:

Freshman forward Benjamin Bosmans-Verdonk has been cleared to play but is not practicing fully yet. "He’s on a recovery plan," Underwood said of the 6-foot-8, 235-pound Belgian freshman. "He’s cleared. We’re not going to throw him out there before he’s 100 percent. That day is becoming near and closer.

Sit-out transfers Austin Hutcherson and Jacob Grandison have upped the competitiveness at practice. “Those two guys are good," Underwood said. "You see two guys that are now running the scout team who are challenging our starters who have 60-plus college games. There’s a real advantage to that." Underwood said adding two sit-out players with multiple years of eligibility remaining "speaks to the comfort level of our roster." Both come with “knowledge and understanding of being ready to play right away. ...They’ll make our guys better, no question.”

Underwood talked up fifth-year senior Kipper Nichols. "He has been one of the big surprises in the first eight practices," Underwood said. "I’ve seen a very consistent Kipper, a guy that has made huge strides defensively. I think that started this summer. ...He’s acting like a fifth-year senior.” Defensively he’s in a better place, making fewer mistakes, Underwood said.

Sophomore guard Alan Griffin is "an absolute nightmare" in practice, Underwood said. "Guys don't want to guard him because they know he's going to go (to the glass) every time."
 
Mad Scientist
Arizona, USA
I remember hearing about Alex Legion raining 3's in practice....making ridiculous number of shots each day.....this sounds good, but I'll wait to see results on the court before I get all jiggy.
While I generally agree, one key difference between Nichols and Legion is that Nichols has actually done it in a game before. He just doesn't do it consistently.
 
Likes: Oranges
Iowa City
Underwoods comments on AG. Is he saying he has added the dribble drive to his game and taking it to the glass? Or AG is working hard on being a rebounder and defenders have to be on him at all times?
 
Sit-out transfers Austin Hutcherson and Jacob Grandison have upped the competitiveness at practice. “Those two guys are good," Underwood said. "You see two guys that are now running the scout team who are challenging our starters who have 60-plus college games. There’s a real advantage to that." Underwood said adding two sit-out players with multiple years of eligibility remaining "speaks to the comfort level of our roster." Both come with “knowledge and understanding of being ready to play right away. ...They’ll make our guys better, no question.”
I’m just excited we can get back to the days of saying our best players are on the bench waiting for next year.
 
Likes: IlliniCaboose
Really need Kipper this year to back up Giorgi at the four. Depth at that position is our only weakness IMO.
 
Likes: Illiniguy90
Glad to gear KN is getting after it on defense. I would assume Underwood is talking about Griffin hittin' the boards, because Griffin also is a threat from 3. Congratulations to Griffin for making those guys work on defensive rebounding. They need it and will run into players like that Can't get outplayed in the play hard department.