Fighting Illini

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NCAAB Illinois Fighting Illini

General Information

Conference: Big Ten

NCAA Division: Division I

City: Champaign, IL

Stadium: State Farm Center

Championships

  • National Championships: None
  • Conference Titles: 3
  • Divisional Championships: None
  • NCAA Tournaments: 1949, 1951, 1952, 1963, 1981, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1997, 1998, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013, 2021, 2022

Past Conferences:

  • Western

Illinois Fighting Illini Standings & Analysis

Check out all the updated Illinois Fighting Illini standings, recent college basketball betting news, and NCAAB betting tips, here at Point Spreads.

All-Time Illinois Fighting Illini Standings & Records

Points Scored

  • Deon Thomas: 2,129
  • Kiwane Garris: 1,948
  • Malcolm Hill: 1,846

Rebounds

  • James Augustine: 1,023
  • Mike Davis: 909
  • Kofi Cockburn: 861

Assists

  • Bruce Douglas: 765
  • Demetri McCamey: 733
  • Dee Brown: 674

Wins

  • Lou Henson: 421
  • Harry Combes: 316
  • Bruce Weber: 210

Overview of the Illinois Fighting Illini Standings

Last-Season Standings

Finishing with a 23-9 record and earning a spot in the NCAA tournament as a #7 seed. Last season Illinois Fighting Illini standings were solid for this college basketball team. While they fell short of their ultimate goal of a national championship, the Illini can still look back on the season with pride and optimism for the future.

One of the key contributors to the team’s success was guard Noah Locke, a transfer from the University of Florida. Locke, a former top 80 recruit and Maryland native, was a career 40-percent three-point shooter and made over 200 three-pointers during his time with the Gators.

Another important addition to the team was French big man Zacharie Perrin. The 6-foot-11 Perrin committed to the Illini late in the recruiting process and joined an already loaded 2022 class.

Of course, the heart and soul of the Illini squad was star center, Sincere Gardner. The top-10 2023 recruit was a dominant force in the paint, averaging 13 rebounds and three blocks per game during the season.

Overall, the 2022 college basketball season was a positive one for the Illini. They proved that they belong among the top teams in the nation, and with key players like Locke and Gardner returning for the next season, the future looks bright for Illinois Fighting Illini standings.

Before Betting on Illini’, Check Out These Tips:


Monitor the NCAAB Injury Report

It’s important to keep in mind that the absence of key players due to injury or other reasons can greatly affect a team’s performance and ultimately, your bet.


Monitor Latest Basketball Trends and Statistics

If you’re interested in keeping up with the latest news and updates on the Illinois basketball team, there are a variety of resources available online. Don’t stop looking at our betting news


Look at College Basketball Betting Trends and Odds

One alternative approach is to consider betting on underdogs. While these bets may be riskier, they can also offer greater potential rewards.


Consider the NCAA Team’s Overall Talent Level

If you’re looking to gain insight into how the Illinois Fighting Illini might perform against upcoming opponents, it can be helpful to take a look at their past performance.

Illinois Fighting Illini Basketball History

The Fighting Illini have been playing in the Big Ten since 1905, joining what was then called the Western Conference and reaching the 20-win mark in just their third season. There was an unbeaten team in 1914-15, a co-Big Ten crown in 1935, and a great campaign in 1941-42 that resulted in the program’s first trip to the NCAA Tournament.

The following season, with a lineup that featured a talented collection known as the “Whiz Kids,” Illinois was ranked No. 1 in the country. However, three of those stars NCAAB players were drafted into World War II and the team declined an invitation to the tournament.

Those early teams established a winning culture in Champaign that reached another level after the war under Harry Combes, who was the town’s high school coach before taking over in 1947. Three of his first five teams went to the NCAA Tournament and all three reached the Final Four.

While still competitive, the program only had one NCAA Tournament appearance in the 1960s and none in the 1970s. A watershed moment in the Illini’s history came when Lou Henson became head coach in 1975, taking over following back-to-back losing seasons in which the team was a combined 13-36.

Henson would win a school record 421 games with Illinois while guiding the team to 12 NCAA Tournaments. His first standout team in 1980-81 featured a senior in Eddie Johnson and a freshman in Derek Harper, two guards who would both eventually play exactly 1,199 games in the NBA.

NCAAB odds were looking up for the Illini, who were a No. 4 seed that year. A second-round upset at the hands of Kansas State ended the run, but Henson began a string of eight consecutive NCAA Tournament berths in 1983. The 1984 squad won the Big Ten in the regular season and raced to the Sweet 16 as a No. 2 seed before falling to Kentucky.

There were two NCAA Tournament wins the following year and single victories in the event in 1987 and 1988 before Henson put together the program’s best team yet in 1988-89.

Featuring an athletic bunch led by future NBA standouts Nick Anderson, Kenny Battle, and Kendall Gill, the Illinois Fighting Illini team stats that season displayed an impressive 86.4 points per game. It was ranked in the top 10 all year – including No. 1 for a week in January – after opening 16-0.

The Illini finished the regular season with three straight wins over teams ranked in the top 15 and won four straight in the NCAA Tournament to get to the national semifinals against conference rival Michigan. The Wolverines fell to Illinois twice during the regular season by an average of 14 points, but the third time was a charm for them thanks to a last-second basket by Sean Higgins.

The Illini had fallen just short of a title game appearance and the program then went through a handful of years with relatively mediocre results. Henson gave way to Lon Kruger in the mid-1990s and the latter led his second team to a co-Big Ten regular-season title in 1998.

Bill Self, who would later guide Kansas to multiple NCAA titles, had a three-year run in which the Illini averaged 26 wins, laying the groundwork for perhaps the best teams in program history.

When Bruce Weber took over for Self in 2003, he inherited a loaded roster that included star guards Deron Williams, Dee Brown, and Luther Head. That first Weber squad won its final 10 games of the regular NCAA season to claim the Big Ten crown and won two games in the NCAA Tournament before falling to top-seeded Duke.

In 2004-05, with the guard trio averaging a combined 41.7 points per game, Illinois flirted with perfection. It won its first 29 games before losing the finale of the regular season to Ohio State, only to carve up all three of its opponents in the Big Ten tourney. The team was an easy No. 1 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament.

The Illini rolled through their first three opponents in the Big Dance and then pulled off a furious comeback to knock off Arizona in overtime to get to the Final Four. After a win over Louisville Cardinals, Illinois was unable to overcome early foul trouble and some cold shooting in a title game loss to North Carolina.

Illinois has made it to the NCAA Tournament seven times since then but never has it won more than one game in the event in that span. Brad Underwood took over as head coach before the 2017-18 season and endured two losing campaigns and one COVID-stunted year before getting the program back into the national picture the past two seasons.

2021-22 Season

In 2020-21, the Illini were second in the Big Ten before winning the conference tourney and earning a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.

The Fighting Illini put up a stellar performance in the 2020-2021 season in the Big Ten conference, and here’s a rundown of their final standings and highlights. They had a regular college basketball season record of 16-4 overall, including an impressive 14-3 in conference play. The Fighting Illini tied with Michigan for first place in the Big Ten but secured the #2 seed in the Big Ten Tournament through a tiebreaker.

In the Big Ten Tournament, the Illinois Fighting Illini won the championship game against Ohio State with a score of 91-88. It was their first Big Ten tournament championship since 2005, and the win was an absolute delight for fans.

However, the Fighting Illini’s NCAA Tournament journey was short-lived, as they were upset by Loyola Chicago in the second round, losing with a score of 71-58. It ended their season with an overall record of 24-7.

Overall, the Illinois Fighting Illini standings and performance in the regular season and Big Ten tournament were remarkable, as they finished the season as Big Ten regular season co-champions and Big Ten tournament champions. Even though their NCAA Tournament journey was short-lived, the Illinois Fighting Illin standings were strong.

Illinois Fighting Illini NCAAB FAQs

What is the highest win total in the Illinois Fighting Illini history?

It’s not even close. The 2004-05 Illini went 37-2 in their run to the national title game. The 37 victories are tied for the second-most in Division I history.

What was the worst season in the Illinois Fighting Illini history?

The worst winning percentage in the modern era came in 1973-74 when Illinois went 5-18 and finished last in the Big Ten. The most losses in program history were 21, which came in 2018-19.

Who is the greatest player in the Illinois Fighting Illini history?

He didn’t have the pro career of backcourt mate Deron Williams or Nick Anderson or Eddie Johnson or Kendall Gill or Derek Harper, but Dee Brown had the biggest impact on the program.
Twice an All-Big Ten first-team performer and the conference’s player of the year in 2005, Brown ranks in the top four in program history in points, assists, steals and 3-pointers. A consensus first-team All-American in 2006, Brown led the Illini to a 114-23 record in his four years, which included a trip to the national title game in 2005.
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