Posts Tagged ‘Illinois Fighting Illini’

QT: Wild Saturday, Sunday’s Bracket Impact Games

February 19, 2023 Leave a comment

QuickTakesAnother tumultuous Saturday in college hoops.  Desperate for more victories, West Virginia and Wisconsin both lost a home.  Kentucky may have punched its ticket by sweeping Tennessee.  Clemson dropped a can’t-lose game at Louisville, a third Quad 4 loss. Utah State rallied and put away a critical home game against Nevada.  Illinois stumbled late at Indiana and missed a golden opportunity to firm up its seeding potential.

The list could go on-an-on …

Oh, and the Selection Committee revealed its initial Top 16, with Kansas fourth (beyond Purdue and Houston) despite having 12 (now 13) Quad 1 victories.  Things that make you go, hmm.  Purdue hosts fading Ohio State today and closes with three of four at home; the Boilermakers lone road trip is to Wisconsin.

Ahead to Sunday’s Bracket Impact Games:

North Carolina at NC State – If North Carolina is going to make a late push, it starts today in Raleigh.  NC State’s bracket status is okay this morning, but a late slide would not be advised. Read more…

QT: Providence keeps climbing, Illinois fading

January 5, 2023 Leave a comment

QuickTakesOnce again, Ed Cooley has his Providence Friars in the thick of the NCAA tournament chase.  The Friars put a stamp of approval on that notion Wednesday by taking down Connecticut.  Providence was more aggressive throughout, holding a 29-10 points advantage at the free throw line.  The Friars are now 5-0 in the Big East after their eighth straight win.

We can’t say the same for Illinois.  The discombobulated Illini have lost four of their past five games against potential tournament teams, all by double digits.  The current iteration of Illinois basketball resembles nothing close to the iteration that rallied to upend Texas in New York on December 6.  Turnovers and poor shooting continue to wreck havoc in Champaign.  Example: Illinois took 28 three-pointers in Wednesday’s loss at Northwestern, making eight (28 percent) to coincide with 15 turnovers.  Now 0-3 in the Big Ten, the Illini need to reverse course quickly. Read more…

QT: Auburn’s resume and Creighton’s woes

December 11, 2022 Leave a comment

QuickTakesThe Auburn Tigers arrived in Atlanta with a No. 11 Associated Press ranking and a nifty 8-0 record.  Those same Tigers were handled rather tamely by another set of Tigers from Memphis.  Perhaps it shouldn’t have been a surprise.

While unbeaten, Auburn’s best wins entering the Holiday Hoopsgiving event were Northwestern (one point) and Saint Louis (five points).   Early NET ratings suggested it was Bradley, although it seems unlikely the Braves will retain their current status.  That isn’t to knock Northwestern or Saint Louis – which beat Memphis at home in November (but also lost by 22 at Iona) – rather, it’s to emphasize that narrowly beating such teams might suggest a tad bit of inflation related to the Tigers’ ranking.

Let’s not overreact to any single outcome, nor determine a teams ultimate destiny in early December.  Let’s also not be stubborn and continue to evaluate teams based upon preseason expectations.  Auburn might well prove to be a Top 25 team.  For now, the Tigers’ resume suggests otherwise. Read more…

Quick Takes: Marquette turns over Illinois

November 16, 2021 Leave a comment

QuickTakesMarquette turned Illinois over Monday night.  Literally.  As in, Illinois committed 26 turnovers.  Credit the Golden Eagles “havoc” under new coach Shaka Smart.  Also credit some ill-advised play from the Illini.  Yes, Illinois was without Kofi Cockburn, but … 26 turnovers?  That’s a recipe for losing, regardless.  Good win for Marquette.  Not-so-good loss for Illinois.  

Moving on …

  • Providence held off Wisconsin to win at the Kohl Center.  The Fryers were just outside the “Field” on Monday morning.  This is not a vintage Badger team, but road wins always matter.
  • Belmont outlasted Furman in OT.  Great game between two quality non-majors; both of whom could play in March.  Chattanooga is a quality bunch in the Southern Conference, too.  Keep an eye on the Paladins and Mocs.
  • Oregon State absorbed a loss at Tulsa – meaning the Beavers have dropped back-to-back games.  Tough start for a team hoping for an NCAA tournament encore.
  • Washington State slipped UC-Santa Barbara.  Not a high profile victory, but solid.  UCSB and UC-Irvine should duke it out for the Big West title and a chance to play spoiler down the road.

More great hoops ahead this week.

Bracketology: Illinois joins No. 1 seeds

March 3, 2021 Leave a comment

Dave2015Fresh off an impressive victory in Ann Arbor, Illinois retains its position as a No. 1 seed in today’s bracket update.  The Illini now own nine Quadrant 1 wins and have a chance at Ohio State this weekend to solidify a spot on the top line heading into the Big Ten tournament next week in Indianapolis.  No changes elsewhere: Gonzaga, Baylor and Michigan lead Regions 1-3.

Seed List

Bubble teams continue to ebb and flow, which is nothing new.  The latest Bubble Talk outlines 30 teams with “Work to Do” between now and Selection Sunday. with a projected 16 spots available.  With conference tournament play underway or starting soon, bubble teams will be hoping several leagues stick somewhat to script.