Illini Basketball 2020-2021

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#476      
Please understand I am not tooting my own horn here. That said, I suggested 7 games ago that I would be starting either Hawk or Grandison, and likely Grandison, because this team simply needed a bigger defender and rebounder who could score. Starter 3 guys 6'3" or shorter with a true perimeter player (Ayo) as the fourth (listed at 6'5" but I would bet a lot of $ he can't touch that with a bare head and feet) puts the team at a disadvantage at both ends. Kofi can only have a chance at 1/3 of the boards max. Getting more minutes for Grandison and Hawkins would, IMHO, prove a big lift to the team.........if they could defend and we know they can both score.

Well, next game out comes JG for the tip and they have not lost since. Total coincidence....but my point is that he has been solid, especially on offense, and Hawk has been pretty much a break even with a plus game or two or three while he climbs the learning curve. Kudos to Jacob for his solid play. Along with being a great kid, he is only beginning to realize of what he is capable to contribute to this team. Even though he is a starter, he needs more minutes.
I’m betting that he can handle Wagner in the Mich game but may need DaMonte on Livers. That combo with Ayo, Trent, and Kofi should be able to lock down Mich. Problem is they still need DaMonte for Brown when he comes in.
 
#477      
When Ayo has his sequences of greatness I sometimes wonder why he isn't even more assertive than he is. With a 7-game win streak however, you can't say he is making bad decisions. Those moments where he is content with getting his teammates involved take away from the "volume of points wow factor" even if he's getting assists. I feel like that unselfishness benefits the team and makes him better than Garza but will surely be overlooked. If Garza wins though, his numbers are great. I truly think Ayo is better.
HRF was the same way. Turned it on fully once he knew he needed to.
 
#478      
Loda, IL
I’m betting that he can handle Wagner in the Mich game but may need DaMonte on Livers. That combo with Ayo, Trent, and Kofi should be able to lock down Mich. Problem is they still need DaMonte for Brown when he comes in.
I think Trent is the guy we want on Brown
 
#479      
Garza and Washington given Co-Player of the Week honors.

Dickinson given Freshman of the Week honors.


That is jacked up. Can't believe they're overlooking Ayo with his second triple-double on the road.
Have to admit I don’t really care much about stuff like this, but really don’t consider it that much of a slight. These awards seem to reward points scored more than other things, and I think Ayo had 31 points on the week — 20 points less than the two co-winners. And yes a triple double is impressive, but this one wasn’t as impressive as his first one being that they left him in a blowout game much longer than they normally would just so he could get those rebounds to complete it.

They also like to spread the weekly awards around when they can, so giving Washington his first one for a very good week makes sense. Garza had a very good week too along with getting the Iowa career mark. Plus they gave Ayo back to back awards very recently. And now there’s nothing to stop them from doing the same over the next two weeks.
 
#480      
HRF was the same way. Turned it on fully once he knew he needed to.
Frank was a little too easy going. I think Ayo is more of trying to find a way to get the team incorporated as we need him too. For a while, I think Ayo and Kofi were taking turns and it semi froze the other guys out. Now Frazier is starting to find a groove and at times, Grandison. We need to find a way to get Miller going a little more and then it will be really hard for teams to join up on us. If we can find that niche with ball movement that started to show at Minnesota, watch out Big Ten.
 
#481      
Have to admit I don’t really care much about stuff like this, but really don’t consider it that much of a slight. These awards seem to reward points scored more than other things, and I think Ayo had 31 points on the week — 20 points less than the two co-winners. And yes a triple double is impressive, but this one wasn’t as impressive as his first one being that they left him in a blowout game much longer than they normally would just so he could get those rebounds to complete it.

They also like to spread the weekly awards around when they can, so giving Washington his first one for a very good week makes sense. Garza had a very good week too along with getting the Iowa career mark. Plus they gave Ayo back to back awards very recently. And now there’s nothing to stop them from doing the same over the next two weeks.
He only played 32 minutes. That's well below his typical share in conference play.
 
#482      
Where does this team rank historically? So far, the best ever at Illinois, according to Sports Reference’s Simple Rating System (www.sports-reference.com/cbb/schools/illinois/), which accounts for point differential and strength of schedule:
1. 2021 – 24.84 – 16-5
2. 1989 – 24.68 – 31-5
3. 2005 – 24.10 – 37-2
4. 2001 – 23.32 – 27-8
5. 1988 – 21.54 – 23-10
6. 1956 – 21.14 – 18-4
7. 1965 – 20.59 – 18-6
8. 1986 – 20.34 – 22-10
9. 1953 – 20.19 – 18-4
 
#484      
Champaign
When Ayo has his sequences of greatness I sometimes wonder why he isn't even more assertive than he is. With a 7-game win streak however, you can't say he is making bad decisions. Those moments where he is content with getting his teammates involved take away from the "volume of points wow factor" even if he's getting assists. I feel like that unselfishness benefits the team and makes him better than Garza but will surely be overlooked. If Garza wins though, his numbers are great. I truly think Ayo is better.

Being the dominant focal point of the offense takes a lot of effort and energy that would be pretty difficult to keep up for a full game. If you have team mates than can score and get involved it makes things a lot easier than trying to do everything solo. Also would probably mean we wouldn't see the same level of defensive intensity if he was always in take over mode on offense. There just doesn't seem to be a benefit when the whole team is scoring as efficiently as they are.
 
#485      
Being the dominant focal point of the offense takes a lot of effort and energy that would be pretty difficult to keep up for a full game. If you have team mates than can score and get involved it makes things a lot easier than trying to do everything solo. Also would probably mean we wouldn't see the same level of defensive intensity if he was always in take over mode on offense. There just doesn't seem to be a benefit when the whole team is scoring as efficiently as they are.
Our last 2 blowouts were during Ayo triple doubles, I like having the team engaged on offense and Ayo has more energy for defense when he is not giving all on offense. All pluses for the team.
 
#486      
He only played 32 minutes. That's well below his typical share in conference play.
I have no problem with BU leaving him in to get it. And yes 32 mins is less than he usually plays, but i would hope he wouldn’t play his typical share in a 30-point blowout. They blew out Minny by 27 in first matchup and Ayo played only 30 minutes. Those extra 2 minutes were just about the time it took Ayo to get his last 3 rebounds for the triple-double. A great achievement? Yes. But not going to get worked up about two other deserving performances being rewarded as co-player of the week.
 
#487      
Good to get the presumably unbiased perspective of an SEC guy.

Is Ayo Dosunmu the Player of the Year?

  • I honestly have no idea how he’s not on par with Iowa’s Luka Garza in the National Player of the Year discussion. It’s possible Dosunmu wins Big Ten Player of the Year and Garza wins the national award. That would be weird, especially since Dosunmu was also great during nonconference play. Either way, he’s a ton of fun to watch. And he’ll need to keep playing well if the Illini are going to make a Final Four run.
 
#488      
I have no problem with BU leaving him in to get it. And yes 32 mins is less than he usually plays, but i would hope he wouldn’t play his typical share in a 30-point blowout. They blew out Minny by 27 in first matchup and Ayo played only 30 minutes. Those extra 2 minutes were just about the time it took Ayo to get his last 3 rebounds for the triple-double. A great achievement? Yes. But not going to get worked up about two other deserving performances being rewarded as co-player of the week.
re: all the comments on possible injury or losing out on 2-3 minutes rest ... Ayo was "smart" on last 2-3 rebounds (5 min to 2:30), Ayo was just lurking around the rim - no defense, no breaks, conserve energy - little risk. get over the Brad taking foolish what if risks
 
#489      
I think Trent is the guy we want on Brown
I like Trent on Smith personally. I think Trent is one of the best at disrupting opposing teams' point of attack and preventing them from getting into their action. Take away the ability to get it to your other guys in positions to score, and you've already won half the battle.
 
#490      
I think the thing being lost in this "should BU have left Ayo in to get the triple-double" question is the bigger picture. Ayo has done a lot for this program and BU did him a solid with a legacy building move. That says a lot about BU and what he prioritizes, and I think potential recruits see that. Recruits want to win, sure, but I think with a lot of them, the top ones especially, they also want to know their individual success will be facilitated, at this level and the next. When the next kid sees that BU left Ayo in for that triple double, I think it shows that BU has both the team's interest, and the players' individual interests, at heart. There's a reason we all want Ayo to win NPOY. His victory is the team's victory and vice versa. I see the triple double as an extension of that and hope that recruits are taking notice as well.
 
#491      
Texas
Hello, Loyalty. I did a thing this morning.

@LostinNebraska - thank you for the inspiration.


Garza-loves-custard-cup.gif
 
#495      
It looks like Iowa winning today has literally clinched us the 2-seed in the BTT, no? I played around with the bracket generator, and we can't catch Michigan but also can't seem to be passed. Even if we lose out and Iowa wins out, they will tie us in the standings, and we will have the head-to-head. OSU only has one more game, and beating us wouldn't get them tied with us.

Unless I missed something ... that's awesome! And we would be playing at 5:30 pm on Friday 3/12!
 
#496      
It looks like Iowa winning today has literally clinched us the 2-seed in the BTT, no? I played around with the bracket generator, and we can't catch Michigan but also can't seem to be passed. Even if we lose out and Iowa wins out, they will tie us in the standings, and we will have the head-to-head. OSU only has one more game, and beating us wouldn't get them tied with us.

Unless I missed something ... that's awesome! And we would be playing at 5:30 pm on Friday 3/12!

I posted this in the bracketology thread but I'll repeat it here as well. There is a scenario where Illinois can get the 1 seed. They would have to beat Michigan on Tuesday and Ohio State on Saturday and Michigan would have to get swept by Michigan State Thursday and Saturday. In that scenario, Illinois would be 16-4 in conference and Michigan would be 13-4. Here's the bracket generator I ran with that scenario as well as higher ranked teams in conference holding serve (hopefully the link works): http://bball.notnothing.net/bracket.php?conf=big10m

In this scenario, we play the 8/9 winner of Wisky/Michigan State as the 1 seed. The 7/10 matchup in that bracket would be Maryland/Indiana.
 
#497      
BU:1 Trash cans:0
Chicago
There is a scenario where Illinois can get the 1 seed. They would have to beat Michigan on Tuesday and Ohio State on Saturday and Michigan would have to get swept by Michigan State Thursday and Saturday. In that scenario, Illinois would be 16-4 in conference and Michigan would be 13-4.
If we win our last 2, and Michigan splits their series with MSU, doesn't that put us 0.5 game ahead of them in the final standings (16-4 to 14-3)?
 
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