Pregame: Illinois at Ohio State, Saturday, January 3rd, 2:30pm CT, ESPN2

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#27
We are that team. You see Illinois on your schedule and you think "No matter how bad it gets, if we keep fighting, Lucy is pulling the football back at some point in this game"
The Illini are and have generally been good enough to have great hopes, but rarely good and lucky enough to realize them. I think this breeds the feelings you are having. While many people recall the old Lou Henson days with fondness, I recall the teams back in the Nick Weatherspoon era giving up bigger second half leads which led to "We're Thru with Lou" bumper stickers (I vaguely recall watching one game that we gave up something like a 25 point lead to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory). Like Cubs fans, the Illini fans have always seemed to have a fatalistic streak.

As for the team's prospects, I don't think anyone would be surprised to be 0-3 to start, but that doesn't mean we don't finish around 11-7 and in the tourney. Have faith. Groce managed to keep last years team from giving up despite a horrific losing streak and coached them to a respectable finish. He can do it again.
 
#28
The Illini are and have generally been good enough to have great hopes, but rarely good and lucky enough to realize them. I think this breeds the feelings you are having. While many people recall the old Lou Henson days with fondness, I recall the teams back in the Nick Weatherspoon era giving up bigger second half leads which led to "We're Thru with Lou" bumper stickers (I vaguely recall watching one game that we gave up something like a 25 point lead to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory). Like Cubs fans, the Illini fans have always seemed to have a fatalistic streak.

As for the team's prospects, I don't think anyone would be surprised to be 0-3 to start, but that doesn't mean we don't finish around 11-7 and in the tourney. Have faith. Groce managed to keep last years team from giving up despite a horrific losing streak and coached them to a respectable finish. He can do it again.
FYI Spoon never played for Lou. Harv Schmidt.
 
#29
Oswego, IL
You remember when the Blackhawks used to play the Canucks in the playoffs every year with Luongo and the Sedins and all that? And as much as that was a great team with great players, you just always couldn't help but feel confident because you knew at the end of the day something bad was bound to happen to them?

We are that team. You see Illinois on your schedule and you think "No matter how bad it gets, if we keep fighting, Lucy is pulling the football back at some point in this game"
A+ reference
 
#30
You remember when the Blackhawks used to play the Canucks in the playoffs every year with Luongo and the Sedin sisters and all that? And as much as that was a great team with great players, you just always couldn't help but feel confident because you knew at the end of the day something bad was bound to happen to them?

We are that team. You see Illinois on your schedule and you think "No matter how bad it gets, if we keep fighting, Lucy is pulling the football back at some point in this game"
Fyp
 
#32
Champaign
Hard to say how good Ohio State actually is... They've had three real tests so far this season (Iowa, UNC, Louisville) and have lost all of them.
 
#33
Fairfield, IL
I've only watched OSU a couple of times. I think they are a nice team.

While Russell has been mentioned on here quite a bit, I like watching Shannon Scott play. The games I've watched him take part in, he's been a great guard for them. Way he passes the ball reminds me somewhat of Jaylon Tate. He had some nifty passes in their win against Wright State the other night that impressed me.

As for the others....haven't really paid attention yet. This game will be tough.
 
#34
Iowa, did good job against the zone. Matta, must be nuts, playing a zone with that personnel. OSU, was slow the other day, would anticipate a much better effort.
 
#35
Besides Russell, I'm also concerned about defending Thompson. He's longer and more athletic than MH and could be a tough cover for him.

The key on O will be making some 3s and sharing the sugar. If we do those 2 things well, we should score 70 or more.

Defensively, I'd put RR on Russell and KN/AC on Scott. Those are their 2 best playmakers, imo.
 
#36
Professional Social Distancer
Virginia
You remember when the Blackhawks used to play the Canucks in the playoffs every year with Luongo and the Sedins and all that? And as much as that was a great team with great players, you just always couldn't help but feel confident because you knew at the end of the day something bad was bound to happen to them?

We are that team. You see Illinois on your schedule and you think "No matter how bad it gets, if we keep fighting, Lucy is pulling the football back at some point in this game"
Geesh - this point of view is not unique to us, rather the "woe is me" fans of every fanbase.

Try an experiment, pick a non UI (B1G) game to watch - imagine one of those teams is Illinois and mentally root and comment on their play - you'll find yourself making much the same comments (unless, perhaps its Wisky). Forced shots, missed bunnies, stupid fouls, moving pick fouls....
 
#37
Professional Social Distancer
Virginia
I think it's only a matter of time before Tate starts. Either that or Rice starts getting time at PG. It looks like our bench (Cosby, Tate, Black, and Morgan) is getting more comfortable. Hopefully that opens up some minutes for Rice at PG.

Starting Tate is difficult in this one though, because of their zone. Starks shooting could be important to break the zone, but Tate's quick passing and ball movement could also break it. We've been waiting so long for Tate to play well against a power 6 team and it's finally happened. I say ride the momentum and see how it goes.
I can see Tate starting but for him to be effective - we'll need a good short baseline guy he can dump to with hard or lob passes. Unfort. that's not NE. I'd experiment with Tate, Rich, Hill LB and NE from a best pound it inside offense. No body shoots the elbow turnaround jumper better than Hill. Nobody penetrates a zone better than Tate (and he tends to get it up and going before the zone sets).. Unfort. NE does not get into position well for quick passes and can't handle many of them - so I would hope LB could make a few monster dunks. White lived off that setup the other day. JE would be our best option if still with us. Can hit the shortie or take it and dunk it. Unfortunately this would hurt us from the outside a bit - the but call would be to jam it inside.
 
#38
I don't care how it's done, but this team needs to find a way to win 10 games in the big ten. They are more than capable. This is just another opportunity for a W, I don't care how they get to 10 wins, just get it done.
 
#39
OSU has talent, but its best player is probably Russell, a frosh who's inconsistent. If he's off like he was vs. Iowa, we have a good chance to win, especially if we can hit some shots over their 2-3 zone, and MH finds those high post seams in the zone and gets a hot hand.
 
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#40
Besides Russell, I'm also concerned about defending Thompson. He's longer and more athletic than MH and could be a tough cover for him.

The key on O will be making some 3s and sharing the sugar. If we do those 2 things well, we should score 70 or more.

Defensively, I'd put RR on Russell and KN/AC on Scott. Those are their 2 best playmakers, imo.
Agree with Rice on Russell. Then it's pick your poison with Scott or Loving. It's going to be a long game if we let Scott continuously get in the lane and make plays. Which is why you put KN/AC on him. But Loving is a dynamic scorer that could potentially abuse JT/AS, especially since he is 6'7.
 
#41
OSU has talent, but its best player is probably Russell, a frosh who's inconsistent. If he's off like he was vs. Iowa, we have a good chance to win, especially if we can hit some shots over their 2-3 zone, and MH finds those high post seams in the zone and gets a hot hand.
This is a talented offensive OSU team. Yhey are long and athletic. Illinois has an experience advantage. Hill could be big flashing to the free throw line against the zone. Hopefully, the orange & blue can steal one on the road.
 
#43
Geesh - this point of view is not unique to us, rather the "woe is me" fans of every fanbase.

Try an experiment, pick a non UI (B1G) game to watch - imagine one of those teams is Illinois and mentally root and comment on their play - you'll find yourself making much the same comments (unless, perhaps its Wisky). Forced shots, missed bunnies, stupid fouls, moving pick fouls....
Simply a brilliant post, VAIllini35. I've learned to do this and it's therapeutic, especially after an Illini loss. When you take this approach, you will notice every team in every game looks like a bunch of clueless clowns making as many or more mistakes than the Illini did. It helps me put Illini game mistakes in perspective, and stops me from hateing on the team I love. Your post should be stuck at the start of every post-game thread. :thumb::thumb::thumb:
 
#44
Tough to win on the road, but I'd like to think that our Coach can fire our guys up.

Hoping for above average shooting from Cosby, Starks, Nunn & Hill, with Ray playing like Ray again.

Luke over Yoda 76-73.
 
#45
Geesh - this point of view is not unique to us, rather the "woe is me" fans of every fanbase.

Try an experiment, pick a non UI (B1G) game to watch - imagine one of those teams is Illinois and mentally root and comment on their play - you'll find yourself making much the same comments (unless, perhaps its Wisky). Forced shots, missed bunnies, stupid fouls, moving pick fouls....
What I also find helps me keep Illinois BBall in the proper perspective.

1. Only one team can be first. In a 14 team conference there has to be a 14 and a 13. All schools would like to be in the top 3 or 4 but in order to have a first there has to be a last and a middle.
2. This is a university with an athletic program. Not an athletic program that happens to have an affiliation with a university.
3. The primary purpose of the school and athletics is to prepare 18-22 year old young people to lead productive and meaningful lives. Not support the egos of the over the hill fan base. :)
 
#46
Going to the game

I'm going to be at the game with some buddies. Anyone know of a good spot to eat lunch and have some beverages before the game?

Thanks!
 
#47
Just something I noticed about D'Angelo Russell...

Against HM teams:
4 games, 11.75 ppg on 28% shooting. Ohio State is 1-3.

Against others:
10 games, 19.6 ppg on 53% shooting. Ohio State is 10-0.
 
#48
Hong Kong
Anyone else watching ESPN classic now? 2000 illini v osu, good stuff
 
#49
Ohio State hasn't lost consecutive homes games since 2007-08. Games on the road are always going to be tough in the B1G, that's why I'm no longer as disappointed with the Michigan loss. Heck, UNI just lost to Evansville on the road. Evansville only beat Coppin State by 5 in just the previous game!

Hoping for a close game with good defense.
 
#50
Anyone else watching ESPN classic now? 2000 illini v osu, good stuff
Fire Kruger he let the team blow a lead in the 2nd Half at home and what is Williams thinking taking the last second shot with someone in his face he should of passed :D...

I think we will come out tough against Ohio State and it will come down to the last 2 minutes.
 
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