Illini Basketball 2020-2021

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I’m kinda thinking this Andre Curbelo guy is the real deal.
 
       
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chitown
I’m kinda thinking this Andre Curbelo guy is the real deal.


I would really be shocked if BU does not put the ball in his hands from game one.
 
       
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I would really be shocked if BU does not put the ball in his hands from game one.
He is not going to bench Frazier as a Senior.
 
       
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He is not going to bench Frazier as a Senior.
We know Ayo, Trent, and Kofi start. 2 openings. DMW, Giorgi, Adam, Hutch, Grand, and Andre are all right there!
 
       
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Curbello, Ayo, Frazier, Kofi, ????

That’s the prediction I’m sticking with. I think people sleeping on him just like some people were sleeping on Kofi a year ago.

Miller might be more ready or more talented or whatever, but he has a similar skill set to Ayo and maybe a couple other players on the team so it makes sense to use them interchangeably.

Curbelo has a unique skill set for this team and I think it’s going to be hard to keep him off the court because of that.

I’ll hedge and say he may not “start”, but he’ll be top 5 in minutes played per game.
 
       
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Regarding Curbello, playmakers/PGs are always in. We don't really have a true PG outside of him. Last year we had some bad turnover games. On top of that Curbello has shown the ability to
play and beat the best st the high scool level. He has elite talent.
 
       
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Toughest position for a freshman. High expectations for position by BU. Turnovers were low with Trent.

Think DMW is also sure starter, just don’t know if at three or four.
 
       
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He is not going to bench Frazier as a Senior.
BU is a good coach and good coaches will play the best players regardless of class. All things being equal he may and likely will play TF and DMW for that matter but if incoming players are better they will play. Good coaches play the best players that earn P T regardless of class. To do otherwise is like a little league coach playing his kid over the neighbors clearly more talented kid! BU wont do that. The best player that earns the time will play.
 
       
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Last year he had a pretty set 8 man rotation with few mins for others in conference games. He changed the starters and varied the mins with different opponents but still with the 8 players. Know people are saying with this depth he can keep players fresher and play more guys. Seems to me to be a balance between keeping a rhythm and keeping players fresh and 8 seems to be the normal balance. So wondering if he will vary which 8 man rotation he will use based on matchups or expand his rotation. He may have the option of going big against the size of Whisky and small against OSU depending on player development. Gets to be a chess player with a lot of pieces.
 
       
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Last year he had a pretty set 8 man rotation with few mins for others in conference games. He changed the starters and varied the mins with different opponents but still with the 8 players. Know people are saying with this depth he can keep players fresher and play more guys. Seems to me to be a balance between keeping a rhythm and keeping players fresh and 8 seems to be the normal balance. So wondering if he will vary which 8 man rotation he will use based on matchups or expand his rotation. He may have the option of going big against the size of Whisky and small against OSU depending on player development. Gets to be a chess player with a lot of pieces.

Yes
 
       
Chevy Chase, Maryland
That Curbelo clip is sick. I'm just salivating at the prospect of seeing this team play, and the BT competition it will face. The Iowa and MSU games will be epic. I hope for the sake of our guys, and all the other BT players, that they aren't deprived of a season. If so, it will be special, and not just for the Illini.
 
       
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That Curbelo clip is sick. I'm just salivating at the prospect of seeing this team play, and the BT competition it will face. The Iowa and MSU games will be epic. I hope for the sake of our guys, and all the other BT players, that they aren't deprived of a season. If so, it will be special, and not just for the Illini.


Agree. Just as, if not more exciting to me than Curbello’s better than advertised athleticism is the picture perfect form on the jump shot.

Sure hope we have a season!
 
       
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I would really be shocked if BU does not put the ball in his hands from game one.

I’m more excited about Curbelo than anyone else on the team. Think he will have a great college career and elevate the careers of many teammates. That said, I don't think he will or should start this season. Curbelo and Ayo are our only two playmaking lead guards (playmaking as in creating easy shots for others). I think Underwood will want to make sure that at least one of them is on the floor at all times. So i expect Ayo to start and Curbelo to be in any time Ayo sits. I’d expect most of their minutes on the floor together will be special situations (i.e., handling defensive pressure, taking advantage of particular opponent lineups and closing out games). Next year with Ayo gone I expect Curbelo to be given the keys and to be the guy that makes the team go.
 
       
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Forgottonia
I hope the B10 is learning from the football fallout that making an early decision on basketball is not a benefit. They should be looking and planning for different options, but no decisions need to be made for some time.
 
       
I hope the B10 is learning from the football fallout that making an early decision on basketball is not a benefit. They should be looking and planning for different options, but no decisions need to be made for some time.
I'm sure that I don't have to remind you that this was a B1G presidents' decision. Many aren't as interested as we would like regarding athletics.
 
       
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Forgottonia
I'm sure that I don't have to remind you that this was a B1G presidents' decision. Many aren't as interested as we would like regarding athletics.
Very true. I would think they are feeling at least some of the heat that Kevin Warren is getting. Whether they care or not is the question.
 
       
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Regarding Curbello, playmakers/PGs are always in. We don't really have a true PG outside of him. Last year we had some bad turnover games. On top of that Curbello has shown the ability to
play and beat the best st the high scool level. He has elite talent.
Curbello will bring a lot to the team but a reduction in turnovers won't be one of them. Trent is more secure with the ball. That's not to say that Curbello may not be the better player, but his style is going to lead to turnovers.
 
       
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I'm thinking we will see multiple starting line-ups and playing time dictated by matchups, particularly on D. If these team has the chemistry, it will go far.
 
       
Chevy Chase, Maryland
Curbello will bring a lot to the team but a reduction in turnovers won't be one of them. Trent is more secure with the ball. That's not to say that Curbello may not be the better player, but his style is going to lead to turnovers.
Well said. Learning to play at the BT level is tough for freshman, particularly guards. The competition is so much quicker, the game is so much more physical, and opposing crowds are loud and hostile. Frankly, I'm amazed when I see frosh such as Ayo perform as well as they do. Curbelo seems as though he will be a standout but we'll see after the rubber meets the road for a few hundred miles.

And BTW, I ❤ Bill Rucks. First Illini I ever saw play in person. 1975.
 
       
chitown
He is not going to bench Frazier as a Senior.

Well Trent or AYO is gonna be playing some SF

BU was practically gushing about how we can push the pace more this year just a few weeks ago .

“The one thing ‘Dre (Curbelo) provides is an elite passer. An elite pitch ahead guy who can really play in the open court,” Underwood said in a Zoom conference Monday. “It gives you tremendous versatility with all three of those guys being able to do things with the ball. Being able to do things in ball screens, being able to get a rebound and push it while the other two get out and run … it’s why I think we can play fast.”

“I’d like to play faster than we did last year,” Underwood admitted. “I think with the addition of guys to our lineup and to our roster … I think we’ll shoot the ball better so I want to play faster.”


But I don't understand why people think in todays college game that simply being a upperclassmen keeps you in the starting lineup. The only person to shoot over 35% from three last year transferred and BU added all this shooting and skill and then surrounds Kofi with another lineup of poor outside shooters ? I m not buy that .

You give the ball to Curbelo and let him go for precisely reasons BU stated above but this allows AYO to become a bigger monster in transition that he was last year but also to spot up and show off some three point shooting . It allows Trent if he starts as the 3rd guard to focus more on shooting and filling the lane as well.


I know people will talk about turnovers but I dont think it applies at all here when you consider how much of a low assists ,poor shooting team we were and I thought last years team was fantastic considering the makeup of last years team.
 
       
Curbello will bring a lot to the team but a reduction in turnovers won't be one of them. Trent is more secure with the ball. That's not to say that Curbello may not be the better player, but his style is going to lead to turnovers.
You are probably correct that Trent likely is better with the ball than Curbelo will be at this point. How quickly these new guys adjust to B10 level of speed and play will be critical to what we can achieve this yea.r What makes this season interesting is that IF we can get solid defensive play from our new players it will relieve some pressure for Frazier who has been a great defender but I think this has hurt his production offensively. I'm not sure everyone appreciates how much his defensive assignments have limited him offfensively. He seems pretty gassed and many of his shots taken this year are late in the clock bail out shots. If he can get in a rhythm and not have to guard our opponents best player I think he can have a big year. I think this is the most versatile team we have had in quite a while - positionless for sure. I love how many lineup options we have.
 
       
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I think we're deep enough to have two completely different lineups play competitive B1G ball. If each lineup played a half, they'd be able to sprint like mad the whole way, and still be fresh for a deep run in the tourney. I expect BU to find out how deep we really go, and try to keep our starters fresher longer. That could make a big difference during late season dogfights, if we're lucky enough to get a full season and tourney.
 
       
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Springfield
He is not going to bench Frazier as a Senior.
This is an absolute....unless and until TF goes 2 for 38 to open the season and then he will sit until he finds some confidence. Curbelo may get the nod, or someone else who is playing well and in whom BU has confidence can do the job on both ends.

This team has enough depth that we can only speculate...and to me that is a waste of time. We know Ayo, Trent and Kofi will open the season....if there is one...and take the floor for the tip-off. We do not KNOW which other two players will join them, and to me it matters little. What I am interested to see is how many of these guys will step up and be a part of the rotation when games are nip and tuck. Many seem to forget about BVV, but he has the skills needed to be very valuable if he has improved in quickness, confidence, and speed of play. If not, he will sit....but there is a spot for him when he does. Hawkins will likely play just to give him and idea of what B1G play is like and where his work needs to be concentrated. Lots to learn. Hamlin may surprise if he can grow his self-image and confidence. We will see. And who knows about Damonte, other than he will give it all on defense. But will he bring the offensive confidence with a bit more aggressiveness we saw at the tail end of B1G play? I like his shooting mechanics....its all between the ears for DFW. HRF (his Dad) did not have that problem. Glad to know Lieb is willing to redshirt.....great decision and attitude that will likely pay off for him big time. The rest of the guys will play their roles, some as stars and the others, I hope, solid and competent roles. I am certain that the coaches have told every one of them that they can be and accomplish whatever they want and are willing to work hard enough to become. The problem is most have no idea what that requires and may not be willing to make the sacrifices and endure the pain and boredom required. The road to greatness is a lonely one.
 
       
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