Long time no see, but Illinois has shown it can still provide terribly good basketball teams. Now, Fighting Illini just wants some credit.
Selected as pre-season favorites during the Big Ten Conference, Illini will play in their first NCAA tournament since 2013. But their race in the conference tournament, which they won overtime before the State of Ohio on Sunday night, which was a team feeling rejected: Illinois was outraged by the win-rate model, approved months ago, that gave Michigan the season’s championship. Big Ten regular awards.
Michigan played 17 games, while Illinois went through a full 20-match schedule.
“For the first time in my memory (and really probably the first time) the team that won the most games – in this case two more – is not even partially recognized in the tournament championship.
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, ”Josh Whitman, sporting director of Illinois, write in an open letter last week. “This is in spite of logic. It is against the very foundations of competition and sport. For a press conference that has just ended arguably the biggest, most competitive season in college basketball history, this is an unfortunate and disappointing result. “
Unfortunately for other conferences, Illinois may now be looking to address some of the frustration with their team.
Young temple keeper Ayo Dosunmu averaged almost 21 points in regular season and became the second player in Big Ten’s history to score multiple braces three times in conference matches. (You’ve probably heard of another player: Magic Johnson.)
Kofi Cockburn, a sophomore center, has scored 15 doubles, among the best in the country. And on the bench there were players like Andre Curbelo, a freshman from Puerto Rico who averaged almost 16 points a game at the end of the season. – ALAN BLINDER
Number 2 Houston
If the American Athletic Conference is any indication of how the Houston Cougars are expected to play at the NCAA Championship, watch out. Houston crossed the ring against Cincinnati, winning the match with a score of 91-54 on Sunday. Cougars have the best shot defense and are one of the strongest overall defenses in the tournament, keeping an average of opponents below 37.5 goal rate on the field. – GILLIAN R. BRASSIL
Number 3 West Virginia
West Virginia, 18-9 this season, have lost three of their last four games, but not by much. Eight of its losses were within five points. And that’s against the top teams; they got close to Baylor in early March and not far from Oklahoma, No. 4 seed in the Midwest, in the early Big 12 defeat – GILLIAN R. BRASSIL
No. 12 State of Oregon
The state of Oregon took a spot on Saturday night by winning the Pac-12 tournament for the first time in program history, though it was chosen to finish the convention at the start of the season. Beavers last attended the NCAA in 2016 with manager Wayne Tinkle, who broke through a drought of the season that lasted until 1990.
Beaver heads Colorado Buffaloes, 70-68, to secure automated bidding. – GILLIAN R. BRASSIL
All matches of the Midwest
No. 1 Illinois (23-6) vs. Drexel number 16 (12-7)
No. 8 Loyola Chicago (April 24) vs. No. 9 Georgia Tech (August 17)
Tennessee # 5 (18-8) vs. Oregon No. 12 (December 17)
No. 4 Oklahoma State (August 20) vs. Liberty 13 (May 23)
No. 6 San Diego (23-4) vs. 11 Syracuse (16-9)
West Virginia No. 3 (September 18) vs. Morehead State 14 (July 23)
No. 7 Clemson (16-7) vs. Rutgers No. 10 (11-15)
Houston No. 2 (March 24) vs. Cleveland State 15 (July 19)