Illinois 74, Northwestern 66 POSTGAME

#52
Looking pretty good, but I would feel much better if Giorgi and Trent started making their shots. Practice, practice, practice shooting guys,
we need you.

Alan, what can we say? Great game. Without Alan, I dare say we lose this game, we need your offense.. Great hustle, should be starting and more minutes each
game. We have to have your outside shooting if we are going to go deep in the tournament. No one else seems to be making the 3s with consistency.

keep on truckin
joe
 
#53
Looking pretty good, but I would feel much better if Giorgi and Trent started making their shots. Practice, practice, practice shooting guys,
we need you.

Alan, what can we say? Great game. Without Alan, I dare say we lose this game, we need your offense.. Great hustle, should be starting and more minutes each
game. We have to have your outside shooting if we are going to go deep in the tournament. No one else seems to be making the 3s with consistency.

keep on truckin
joe
They all put up hundreds of shots a day.
 
#54
Chicago, IL
Great atmosphere at the game (sprang for last minute tickets). We won against an overmatched NU team but it's clear we didn't have our heads in the game. Hope we can turn it on in the remaining games.

Also, other than because we were up big, can anyone else think of a reason why Griffin didn't play the last few minutes? Taking your best scorer of the game out just invited a possible comeback attempt. Doesn't make any sense but hey, got the win.
 
#55
Looking pretty good, but I would feel much better if Giorgi and Trent started making their shots. Practice, practice, practice shooting guys,
we need you.

Alan, what can we say? Great game. Without Alan, I dare say we lose this game, we need your offense.. Great hustle, should be starting and more minutes each
game. We have to have your outside shooting if we are going to go deep in the tournament. No one else seems to be making the 3s with consistency.

keep on truckin
joe
I feel like Northeastern played quite well and could have easily won this battle. AG was the difference. How nice that the difference guy was an Illini. We're getting there.
 
#56
He is a load. They have length. Get some experience and better guard play and they become competitive fast.
If you are positive like this on NU's future, and I'm not arguing there's some reasons to be, what are the Big Ten teams who will be down next year, next couple years? Everyone has been saying good things about Nebraska's future too, just got the Wisky transfer...just wondering who the 10-14ish Big Ten teams will be going forward if people think Nebraska and NU are going to move up. And most importantly want to make sure the days of Illinois being in that group are a thing of the past. Seems like they should be. Could Purdue slide back, Wisky slide back, Rutgers, Penn State, etc.
 
#60
I totally get AG coming off the bench. He brings a whole new dynamic as a 6th man, but 20 minutes is a joke? That kid should of been on the floor at the end of the game. Why give them any hope? Our best line up is clearly TF/AF, AD, DW, AG and Kofi. I don’t know but when Griffin is on the floor I think Illinois looks like a sweet 16 team or even better? Because they can score! We are big this way also 7 foot, 6-5, 6-5, 6-3 and 6-0. I don’t get why not say 8 more minutes per game (4 per half?
 
#62
I totally get AG coming off the bench. He brings a whole new dynamic as a 6th man, but 20 minutes is a joke? That kid should of been on the floor at the end of the game. Why give them any hope? Our best line up is clearly TF/AF, AD, DW, AG and Kofi. I don’t know but when Griffin is on the floor I think Illinois looks like a sweet 16 team or even better? Because they can score! We are big this way also 7 foot, 6-5, 6-5, 6-3 and 6-0. I don’t get why not say 8 more minutes per game (4 per half?
BIG 6th man of the year award? Dre didn’t get it last year but being on a winning team makes a big difference.
 
#64
Well, I think that sealed the bid. Last remaining chance for a 'bad' loss on the schedule. I am thrilled at the way this team has responded post the Braggin' Rights game. I would be lying if I didn't despair after that game and had painted an entire scenario in my head where Underwood wasn't gonna get this done and serious doubts to his effectiveness were lingering. Underwood has pulled so many of the right strings since then and the players have shown such toughness that you can only believe that the current Illinois Bball culture is immensely strong. Such props to this squad. I know still lots to play for, but this has been a great run in conference and I'm thrilled.

Now the game. This was some of the best zone breaking offense we've run this year and yes a lot of that has to do with Griffin getting face melting hot. 2 or 3 times Damonte got into the belly of the zone and swung the ball textbook style to a rhythm 3. Throughout much of the game the defense struggled and if the offense ever went into a prolonged stall there could have been trouble, but that didn't happen. Illinois kept them at bay the entire game and won this game fairly comfortable by scoring. Most of the year defense kept us surging this game it was the offense.

Who should get the lion share of the credit? Griffin of course. Ayo was great again and that behind the back left handed layup was sweet, his bag of tricks has some gems in it. But Griffin was an absolute monster tonight. It wasn't just his 6-8 from 3, but by the end that hoop must of looked enormous for him, splash city, it was also his put back in the 1st half and his sweet alleyoop from Damonte. The man was everywhere. His energy can carry portions of the game and is a true X-factor for how far this squad can go.

Despite those two dominating this game was truly won on the boards. 41-26! It is hard to lose with that disparity and for this team to be able to just boss around the bottom of the conference on the glass is a strange feeling for Illinois fans. Kofi has changed the landscape in the paint. Allows our athletic swings to have more clear runs at the rebounds, let alone grabbing them himself. Even Giorgi is getting boards, again looks so unconfident in the paint, worried about him.

Great W. lets get it done at home against Indiana and see how far this team can climb.
 
#65
If you are positive like this on NU's future, and I'm not arguing there's some reasons to be, what are the Big Ten teams who will be down next year, next couple years? Everyone has been saying good things about Nebraska's future too, just got the Wisky transfer...just wondering who the 10-14ish Big Ten teams will be going forward if people think Nebraska and NU are going to move up. And most importantly want to make sure the days of Illinois being in that group are a thing of the past. Seems like they should be. Could Purdue slide back, Wisky slide back, Rutgers, Penn State, etc.
Rutgers is sliding back THIS year!
 
Likes: Chuck15
#66
This team is going to be a tough out in the tournament , i could see 4 or 5 big ten teams in the sweet 16
 
#67
Sycamore, Illinois
We have gotten away with it this year by substantially improving in conference season but, the depth of the B1G will make it imperative to have a good non conference season. If Neb and NW improve as we have discussed it may not be so much of other teams backsliding as there just won’t be much difference top to bottom. Or say 5-14. Probably will always be 3-4 teams that stand out a little each year. The recent logjam in 2nd place this year kind of argues against having 3 or 4 stand out on top but, by the end of the year maybe it will look that way.
 
#68
Professional Social Distancer
Virginia
Never had a feeling we would lose that game. I simply think that NU outplayed themselves down in Champaign. Scrappy team - they will miss Spencer next year (at least against us where we, for some reason, don't seem to take him as a serious player).

I am not seeing as much hope as some on this board for NU next year - they seem a bit one dimensional and simply not strong down low (Young is dangerous in that he can harm other players with his wild flailing arms and goofy play). Buie will get better of course, but other than Nance, the rest are kind of spot up shooter types. Once we figured out their zone, we pretty much got a ton of good looks and better shooting teams (which we will be next year) will pick that apart much like AG did yesterday.

I guess that "There's always next year" theme has stuck in Chicago, but other than the rivalry aspect of our games - they don't really scare me. Of course, time will tell.
 
#69
And to think that 11 months ago Tevian Jones was slightly ahead of Alan Griffin. Man oh man, what a difference 11 months makes..
 
#70
Never had a feeling we would lose that game. I simply think that NU outplayed themselves down in Champaign. Scrappy team - they will miss Spencer next year (at least against us where we, for some reason, don't seem to take him as a serious player).

I am not seeing as much hope as some on this board for NU next year - they seem a bit one dimensional and simply not strong down low (Young is dangerous in that he can harm other players with his wild flailing arms and goofy play). Buie will get better of course, but other than Nance, the rest are kind of spot up shooter types. Once we figured out their zone, we pretty much got a ton of good looks and better shooting teams (which we will be next year) will pick that apart much like AG did yesterday.

I guess that "There's always next year" theme has stuck in Chicago, but other than the rivalry aspect of our games - they don't really scare me. Of course, time will tell.
I'm with you on the long term for Northwestern. At the end of the day, the tourney appearance was just a chimera. They have a Dookie leading their program. They will suffer the same fate as every other team in America that had a Dookie lead their program.
 
#71
Stylin' and Profilin'
Griffin is super active and runs hard to get open/rebounds/etc., seems to be everywhere sometimes. Might need breathers more often. I could be wrong, just a thought.
 
#72
Nice, they took care of business (comfortably) this week with Nebraska and Northwestern. Griffin is an awesome star that leads the 2nd unit, and I do not see this as coming off the bench. I was impressed with coach tonight leaving him in outside of normal rotations because he was hot. We have 6 players now can be on the floor with confidence, and 2 more that just needs there swagger back (GB & KN). Maybe GB bucket (didn't touch the ball), will be the magic he needs.
 
#73
Winged Warrior
No reason to wear out AG3 with extra minutes. Stretch run, keep everyone fresh. It's an 8 man rotation with no foul trouble and spot minutes for Tev unless something goes bad.

BU is doing an excellent job with the rotation.
 
#74
Thank you AG. Our problem as I see it is that if GB doesnt find himself and start producing a potentially great season could crash and burn early come tournament time.