Illini Basketball 2019-2020

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Baltimore, MD
I came across a video of Shaq when he was younger and it got me wondering, how different of a size was Shaq of early LSU days to Kofi now?

Well, not that different.

Linky

I know it's a different NBA game now. But man, it sure seems like Kofi has some of that potential in him. Also, Shaq was at LSU for 3 years. Again, different time, but it would be swell to get 3 years from Kofi.
This is interesting. Shaq was listed at 7'-1" and 294. Kofi is listed at 7'-0" and 290, but I would wager he's lost 12-15 pounds since getting on campus due to conditioning (Same thing could have been true of Shaq his first season or two at LSU, if you watch highlights of him there and in high school he's much thinner than his mid-late NBA career). Below is a comparison of Shaq and Kofi's freshman years.

Fresh.MPGFG%FT%PPGRPGBPGFouls
Shaq28.257.3%55.6%13.912.03.63.8
Kofi27.355.6%67.6%15.09.72.23.2

Kofi's numbers compare better than I expected to Shaq, given how dominate Shaq was while in college. Let's hope Kofi can make a sophomore leap like Shaq did where he averaged this:

Soph.MPGFG%FT%PPGRPGBPGFouls
Shaq31.562.8%63.8%27.614.75.02.8
Kofi???????
 
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Iowa City
I came across a video of Shaq when he was younger and it got me wondering, how different of a size was Shaq of early LSU days to Kofi now?

Well, not that different.

Linky

I know it's a different NBA game now. But man, it sure seems like Kofi has some of that potential in him. Also, Shaq was at LSU for 3 years. Again, different time, but it would be swell to get 3 years from Kofi.
That bio. "National Player of the Yeas as chosen by L.A. Gear" This just made my day.
 
Springfield
There is a lot of excitement centered around this season's Illini hoopsters. This as good, but we must be cautious and not forget that they are mostly teens trying to learn a game played at a very high speed today with excellent coaches and players everywhere.

But what I saw at Purdue on Tues. night, Jan. 22, was a team that played at a level of a Final Four caliber entrant. But, this year, there are a myriad of teams with such capabilities and luck will play a huge part of the makeup of that elite group come April. We must not forget that teams play on any given night at some place on the fact curve that plots their level of play over the season. On the left end of that curve are games against Nicholls State, Miami, and Mizzou...not to mention a fold and go home when the game had been won against Maryland. On the right end are gritty defensive battles against Wisconsin and Rutgers and good all-around games against Michigan and two against Purdue. But with the so many good but no great teams in the field, winning is a crap shoot as no one will play at their right end for 6 games in a row against the best 64 teams in the country. But....why not Illinois. We see a team that is unselfish and learning and getting better seemingly every game. That does not last forever, but with good coaching the climb can continue...until they play avg against a good team playing at or near their best.

My point is, I am thankful for the gift of Kofi Cockburn, Georgi B., Ayo, Trent and Co. Seeing them learn and grow and bond closer...win or lose....is a gift to all Illini fans. What pleases me most is to see them play the game competently....to display a grasp of intelligent play, patience, hard work and skill growth. That is what I grew up with watching the Fighting Illini since the mid-50s. B1G warriors who bring it every night and have the talent and desire to play with the very best. Sure, I wish the team was comprised of 10 former Illinois high school All-State players with a few talented out of state contributors who want to play for the coach, a great university, a rabid fanbase, and to continue a legacy. But, for whatever reason, that opportunity does not exist at the moment. Honestly, unlike when I played, Illinois High School basketball is not what it once was and great players exist and a dozen or more other states as well as all over the world as the sport grows. Give Brad Underwood and his staff for rapidly coming to that conclusion and seeking talent elsewhere to rebuild the program with what I see as really good kids and staying away from the huge egos. Kofi and Georgi are the poster children of the type of kids that we should be grateful to have and not some of the others who have turned into poster children for troubled convicts.

There will be more great moments for this team, and assuredly some great disappointments. My hope is that they no longer lose games but get beat by teams playing great....which is what the B1G is and particularly this year. My hat is off to every contributor to this team as I don't know how many more I will get to see play at this level. But, finally, like the Whiz Kids, this team can win it all whether they do or not.
 
I came across a video of Shaq when he was younger and it got me wondering, how different of a size was Shaq of early LSU days to Kofi now?

Well, not that different.

Linky

I know it's a different NBA game now. But man, it sure seems like Kofi has some of that potential in him. Also, Shaq was at LSU for 3 years. Again, different time, but it would be swell to get 3 years from Kofi.
In my opinion, Shaq was a lot more explosive and aggressive in the open court. He was a more fluid athlete, but Kofi is relatively inexperienced. I think Kofi’s best days are ahead for sure as he becomes more and more comfortable.
 
In my opinion, Shaq was a lot more explosive and aggressive in the open court. He was a more fluid athlete, but Kofi is relatively inexperienced. I think Kofi’s best days are ahead for sure as he becomes more and more comfortable.
Shaq is definitely a lot more natural and fluid athlete/mover. Kofi is putting up monster numbers for a freshman though! Big numbers regardless of class, but crazy considering he is a freshman.
 
Shaq is definitely a lot more natural and fluid athlete/mover. Kofi is putting up monster numbers for a freshman though! Big numbers regardless of class, but crazy considering he is a freshman.
Kofi is more skilled than Shaq at that age. Shaq couldn’t shoot from 5 ft. And certainly not from the ft line. Not sure how you judge the athletic ability as Kofi moves pretty well.
 
No, Q3 loss is worse than a Q2 loss. Kinda weird but need to root for Mizzou to win enough to stay at a Q2 loss.
I thought he was saying that Mizzou wasn't a Q3 loss anymore(meaning it was Q2).

"1/23 Update... That Miznoz loss isn't a Q3 any more and Miami is "in danger" of moving from Q3 to Q2..."
 
Kofi is more skilled than Shaq at that age. Shaq couldn’t shoot from 5 ft. And certainly not from the ft line. Not sure how you judge the athletic ability as Kofi moves pretty well.
Hmmm...I know that athletic ability is a touchy subject around this board. I will say that Shaq was much more "fluid mover." Kofi moves really well for his size, but he is a bit stiff, especially when compared to a young Shaq. The good thing is, Shaq was a freak and a once in a generation-type player/athlete (there's that word again.)
 
In my opinion, Shaq was a lot more explosive and aggressive in the open court. He was a more fluid athlete, but Kofi is relatively inexperienced. I think Kofi’s best days are ahead for sure as he becomes more and more comfortable.
Kofi looks like he could (form wise) have a much better jumper than Shaq ever developed, Sooooo it'll be a fun comparison to watch
 
In honor of our ascendance to first place, I prepared a head-to-head matrix for conference play.

I intend to update it at the end of each day's games, for my own information.

It's hard to make out the embedded image below ... sorry about that.

b10matrix.png
 
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Shaq started at LSU at 17 years old. Kofi started UI at 20 years old. Big difference. Kofi is a Freshman in name only.
Good point! Kofi only been playing for four years, not sure of Shaq’s background.
 
Kofi needs to go full court fast break and finish with a dunk before I'm thinking Shaq - maybe this year there's still time
I really only thought of Shaq because of their similar size as a college freshman. Their age difference is news to me though.

Their numbers in the freshman year being so similar is still pretty interesting.
 
Captain Trips-ville, Planet Houston
BBV: tough break being injured, but it's great the he'll get a redshirt year. Really think he can be an impact player. Love his potential. Having a year in the program should pay good dividends next season. I think it will be very difficult for Hawkins to bypass him (especially next year). The competition between them will help both. One year as an understudy to Giorgi, then look out (yeah, I'm assuming Giorgi's gone after 3 seasons).
 
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