Game Day Essentials:
Indiana (11-6, 2-4) at Illinois (13-5, 4-3)
- Tip Time: 8:30 p.m. Eastern
- Location: State Farm Center (15,544), Champaign, Illinois
- Television: FS1 (Jason Benetti and Stephen Bardo)
- Stream: Fox Sports
- IU Radio Network: IU Radio Network
- Point Spread: Illinois is a 6.5-point favorite
- KenPom Projected Score: No. 19 Illinois 77 No. 28 Indiana 72
- Series: Indiana leads 94-91. IU won last meeting 65-63 on Mar. 11, 2022
Illinois’ Brad Underwood:
Brad Underwood was named Illinois’ head coach in March of 2017.
In his first five full seasons at Illinois, Underwood posted a 94-66 (.588) record, including back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances in 2020-21 and 2021-22. In 2020-21, the Illini won the Big Ten Tournament and in 2021-22 they won the Big Ten regular season title.
Underwood has also had great success on the recruiting trail, landing Ayo Dosunmu Kofi Cockburn, to name a few. Dosunmu was the program’s highest-rated guard recruit since 2002 and Cockburn was the program’s highest-rated center recruit since 2010.
In year three Illinois had a top 15-ranked class and has followed with top-25 classes in each of the last two recruiting cycles.
Illinois’ results and roster:
Illinois has been up and down. They started the season 6-1, then lost four of seven and are currently on a four-game winning streak.
They have two top-11 KenPom wins on their resume; 79-70 on a neutral court vs. No. 3 UCLA and 85-78 on a neutral court vs. No. 11 Texas. They also own top-100 wins over Syracuse, Wisconsin, Nebraska and Michigan State.
• Illinois is tied for the Big Ten’s longest active winning streak at four straight. It is Illinois’ longest winning streak this season, alongside a 4-0 start to open the year.
• This is Illinois’ final game in a stretch of six games in 16 days from Jan. 4-19, with two-day preps for all six.
• During its four-game winning streak, Illinois is averaging 77.0 points and shooting 35.4% from 3-point range, while holding opponents to 61.3 points and 23.8% from three.
• This is a dramatic improvement from the 0-3 start to Big Ten play, when the Illini averaged 61.7 points on 28.2% behind the arc, while opponents averaged 72.7 points and made 43.1% from three.
• Victorious in its last two games vs. Indiana at State Farm Center, Illinois is aiming for its longest home winning streak over the Hoosiers since claiming five in a row in Champaign from Jan. 10, 2009 through Dec. 31, 2013.
• Illinois leads the Big Ten and ranks second in the country behind Utah Valley in blocked shots, averaging 6.3 bpg.
• Illinois has three AP top-15 wins (No. 2 Texas, No. 8 UCLA and No. 14 Wisconsin), tied with Arizona, Iowa State and Kansas for second-most nationally behind Alabama’s four.
Illinois’ 2022-23 KenPom Highlights:
Tempo – No. 59 (Offense No. 54 / Defense No. 157)
Offensive Efficiency – No. 40
- Illinois’ effective field goal percentage of 53.5 percent is No. 46 nationally. They are No. 13 nationally in two-point percentage (56.4) and rank No. 203 in three-point percentage (33.1).
- The Illini are good at giving themselves multiple possessions to score, getting offensive rebounds on 34.0 percent of possessions, No. 32.
- Turnovers have been a problem, as the Illini cough it up on 19.6 percent of possessions, No. 243.
- Illinois likes to shoot from deep, as three-point attempts account for 43.5 percent of field goal attempts, No. 47.
Defensive Efficiency – No. 25
- Illinois ranks No. 13 in overall opponent effective field goal percentage (44.0), including No. 71 in three-point percentage (31.3) and No. 10 in two-point percentage (42.7).
- The Illini contest every shot, as opposing teams get blocked on 15.6 percent of possessions, No. 9.
- Closing out to the three-point line is something Illinois is pretty good at, as three-point attempts account for just 31.1 percent of opponent field goal attempts, No. 20
- Illinois can foul too much at times, with free throw attempts at 30.1 percent of field goal attempts, No. 168.
- Note: Nothing else on Illinois’ defensive resume is outside of the top-110.
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