Game overview | Illini back in action on Saturday
|Illinois Probable Starters (from the last game)|
|Pos.||No.||Last name||Ht.||weight||Year.||PPG||RPG||APG||To note|
|g||1||Trent Frazier||6-2||175||Sr.||11.6||3.9||2.9||27 points and 5 steals against Arizona|
|g||11||Alphonse plummer||6-1||180||Gr.||16.7||2.1||0.9||6 consecutive games at 20 points (23.7 points per game)|
|g||20||Da’Monte Williams||6-3||215||Sr.||3.5||6.2||3.4||5.4 apg over the last four games|
|F||33||Coleman hawkins||6-10||215||So.||8.4||5.6||2.6||Block UI Leads (10)|
|VS||21||Kofi Cockburn||7-0||285||Jr.||21.4||12.0||1.1||8th in NCAA for scorers, 3rd for rebounds|
|Off the bench|
|Pos.||No.||Last name||Ht.||weight||Year.||PPG||RPG||APG||To note|
|g||0||Brandin Podziemski||6-5||200||Fr.||0.2||0.8||0.6||2021 Wisconsin M. Basketball|
|F||2||Connor Serve||6-9||235||So.||0.0||0.0||0.0||The only walkon of the team in second year|
|G / F||3||Jacob Grandison||6-6||210||Gr.||12.7||4.1||1.8||17.0 points per game in the last three games|
|F||4||Omar Payne||6-10||240||Jr.||1.8||2.0||0.2||7 rebounds against Rutgers, a season high|
|g||5||André Curbelo||6-1||175||So.||9.3||4.3||5.5||Countries leading the assistance rate (47.9)|
|g||ten||Luke Goode||6-7||200||Fr.||3.0||2.0||0.6||2021 Indiana All-State First Team|
|VS||12||Brandon lieb||7-0||220||So.||1.0||0.8||0.3||A career-high 4 points against ASU|
|F||13||Benjamin Bosmans Verdonk||6-8||235||r-So.||1.9||3.8||1.0||Career-high 6 assists against UTRGV|
|g||15||RJ Melendez||6-7||205||Fr.||3.6||1.4||0.3||Florida SIAA 2021 Player of the Year|
|g||22||Austin hutcherson||6-6||190||Gr.||2.8||2.0||0.5||Debuted in the UI on Nov 22 against Cincy|
The Head Coach Brad underwood
Career file: 187-86 (.685), Grade 9
In Illinois: 78-59 (.569), 5th grade
Serial notes against Saint Francis Pa.
Registration: First meeting
Underwood vs. Arizona: First meeting
• Illinois returns to action on Saturday after a week off for final exams, hosting Saint Francis Pa. (12 noon, BTN).
• It’s reunion weekend for the Illinois men’s basketball program, marked by the 20th anniversary of the 2001 and 2002 Big Ten Championship teams (details below).
• Illinois are shooting 42.1% from a 3-point field in the last six games while averaging 11.7 three (70-166). The Illini scored 16 three-point goals last time against Arizona, tying the second-highest game total in school history.
• Illinois are averaging 85.6 points in the last five games (428).
• Illinois topped eight of 10 opponents to rank fifth in the NCAA for rebound margin at +12.7 rpg.
• Illinois ranks third nationally in offensive rebound percentage (41.1).
• All-American / Big Ten Player of the Year Kofi Cockburn ranks eighth in the country in scorers at 21.4 points per game and is the NCAA’s third rebounder at 12.0 points per game.
• Cockburn is one of two players averaging at least 20 points and 10 rebounds (Jamal Cain, Oakland).
• Cockburn is averaging 15.3 rebounds in the last three games (46).
• Cockburn has 33 career double doubles, mostly tied in the NCAA among active players since 2019-20 (James Butler, Drexel).
• Cockburn has drawn 49 fouls in seven games (7.0 on average). He shoots 7.7 fouls every 40 minutes, which ranks him seventh nationally.
• Cockburn ranks 13th nationally in the offensive ranking by kenpom (117.7).
• Cockburn has eight assists in seven games. His season total in 31 games last year was five.
• Alphonse plummer is averaging 23.7 points in the last six games (142), shooting 47.5% on a 3-point range (29-61) while averaging 4.8 to three.
• Plummer has scored 20 points in each of the last six games, the longest streak for an Illini since Brian Cook also scored six in a row from December 28, 2002 through January. 15, 2003.
• Plummer leads the Big Ten by 3 points, averaging 3.4 marks. He led the Pac-12 last season, averaging 2.6 to three in Utah.
• Plummer is perfect from the foul line this season (31-31), including 29 of 29 in the last five games. His current streak of 31 consecutive marks is the fifth longest streak in school history.
• Trent Frazier has averaged 22.5 points (45), 6.0 rebounds (12) and 3.5 steals (7) over the last two games, shooting 58.3% from field (14-24) and 56, 3% at 3 points (9-16).
• Frazier had 18 points in Iowa, then erupted for a season 27 high against Arizona, his highest points total since his second season (30 points at Minnesota on 1/30/19).
• Frazier became the 13th player in Illini history to record 1,500 career points on Dec. 6, scoring the No. 1,500 on his last point of the Iowa game, a free throw with: 49 left to play.
• Frazier is now # 12 on the UI scorecard (1,527) and is 126 points away from the All-Time Top 10.
• Jacob Grandison is 10 behind scoring 1,000 career points. He totaled 737 points in two seasons at Holy Cross and has 253 points as Illini.
• Grandison has averaged 17.0 points in the last three games (51).
• Grandison seeks to become the third 1,000-point goalscorer on Illini’s current roster, joining Trent Frazier (1,527) and Kofi Cockburn (1111).
• Grandison shoot 50% at 3 points in his last five games (14-28).
• Da’Monte Williams is averaging 6.6 rebounds in the last eight games (53), and 5.4 assists in the last five (27).
2001 and 2002 Big Ten Champs honored
Illinois Men’s Basketball will host an alumni reunion this weekend. As part of the program-wide reunion, the Fighting Illini 2000-01 and 2001-02 will receive special recognition to mark the 20th anniversary of their back-to-back Big Ten Championships.
These teams will be honored at a halftime ceremony, and after the game, they will hold autographs for fans on the grounds of the State Farm Center. In addition, a commemorative poster featuring the 2001-02 era jersey will be distributed to the first 1,000 fans entering the arena.
Former Illini greats from the 2001 and 2002 Big Ten Championship teams planning to compete include:
Cory bradford – Illinois’ All-Time Top Scorer and Career 3-Point Shooter… 2001 Honorable Mention All-Big Ten… 2002 Team Captain
Frank williams – Honored Illinois Jersey… 2001 Big Ten and All-American Player of the Year… 2001 and 2002 All-Big Ten First Team… 2001 and 2002 Team MVP
Brian cook – Illinois Honored Jersey… 2001 and 2002 Second Team All-Big Ten
Sergio mcclain – 2001 Team captain
Marcus griffin – 2001 Team captain
The Illini 2000-01 went 13-3 in the league to win a share of the Big Ten title and earn a No.1 seed in the NCAA tournament. They were 27-8 overall, qualifying for the Elite Eight and marking the third most successful season in school history.
The 2001-02 Illini went 11-5 in the league, winning their last seven conference games to claim a title share and mark the first time in 50 years that Illinois has repeated as the Big Ten champion. They were 26-9 overall, qualifying for the NCAA Sweet 16 and tying the fourth most wins in UI history.
Illinois Full Game Notes (PDF)