Men's Basketball
Illinois Game Notes at Michigan State

Mike Tisdale and the Illini take on Michigan State Saturday at 3 p.m.
Mike Tisdale and the Illini take on Michigan State Saturday at 3 p.m.

Jan. 16, 2009

Champaign, Ill. -

Illinois Men's Basketball Game Notes vs. Michigan State in PDF Format Get Acrobat Reader

Game #18: Illinois (15-2, 3-1) at #7ap/10 Michigan State (14-2, 4-0)
Jan. 17, 2009 // 3 p.m. CT/4 p.m. ET // ESPN
East Lansing, Mich. // Breslin Center (14,759)

On the Air

ESPN: Dave O'Brien, play-by-play; Doris Burke, expert analyst

Illini Sports Network-44 stations: Brian Barnhart, play-by-play; Jerry Hester, expert analyst; Loren Tate pregame/halftime/ postgame interviews.

Illini Probable Starters
G - 32	Demetri McCamey   So., 6-3, 205       12.3 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 4.8 apg
G - 1	Trent Meacham     r-Sr., 6-2, 195     12.2 ppg, 2.4 rpg, 2.8 apg
G - 3	Chester Frazier   Sr., 6-2, 195       5.4 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 5.9 apg, 1.4 spg
F - 24	Mike Davis        So., 6-9, 210       11.4 ppg, 7.5 rpg, 1.6 apg
C - 54	Mike Tisdale      So., 7-1, 235       11.9 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 1.3 bpg

Off the Bench G - 13 Jeff Jordan So., 6-1, 185 1.4 ppg, 0.4 rpg, 1.4 apg G - 15 Bubba Chisholm Jr., 5-11, 180 0.5 ppg, 0.1 rpg C - 21 Stan Simpson Fr., 6-9, 220 considering redshirt F - 23 Dominique Keller Jr., 6-7, 230 5.7 ppg, 2.2 rpg G - 25 Calvin Brock r-Sr., 6-5, 200 5.4 ppg, 2.6 rpg F - 30 Bill Cole So., 6-9, 215 1.4 ppg, 1.2 rpg G - 33 Alex Legion So., 6-5, 200 5.3 ppg, 2.0 rpg F - 34 C.J. Jackson r-Jr., 6-8, 265 1.1 ppg, 0.6 rpg C - 50 Richard Semrau r-So., 6-10, 240 1.8 ppg, 2.1 rpg

Illinois Head Coach Bruce Weber
Overall Record: 246-103/.705 (11th year)
At Illinois: 143-49/.745 (6th year)
Big Ten: 56-30/.651
Vs. Michigan State: 5-4
Assistant Coaches: Wayne McClain (8th year), Jay Price (6th year), Jerrance Howard (2nd year)
Assistant to the Head Coach: Gary Nottingham (6th year)
  Director of Basketball Operations: Sean Harrington (1st year)
  Trainer: Al Martindale (26th year at Illinois)

Michigan State Head Coach: Tom Izzo
Overall Record: 319-132/.707 (14th year)
At Michigan State: Same
Vs. Illinois: 14-11

Series Notes: Michigan State
Illinois leads the all-time series over Michigan State, 53-51, but the Spartans own a 32-18 advantage in games played in East Lansing. After winning three of four at MSU (2002, 2005, 2006), Illinois has dropped its last two games at the Breslin Center.

Michigan State won both meetings last season, 51-41 in East Lansing on Jan. 30 and 59-51 in Champaign on March 6.

Opening Tips
• With its victory over Michigan on Wednesday, Illinois became the 13th team in NCAA Div. I history to reach 1,600 wins all-time.

• In the win over Michigan, Illinois held the Wolverines to a season-low 51 points on season-low 32.2 percent shooting (19-59).

• With assists on 71.3 percent of its baskets this season, Illinois leads the nation in assist percentage. The Illini also lead the NCAA in assists, averaging 19.4 assists per game. Illinois, meanwhile, ranks second nationally with a team assist-to-turnover ratio of +1.5.

• After opening league play with two road games, Illinois is now in the midst of having four out of five games at home. The stretch began with Illinois' win over Indiana last Saturday and continued with Wednesday's win over Michigan. Following Saturday's trip to Michigan State, the Illini return to the Assembly Hall next week to host Ohio State (Jan. 20) and Wisconsin (Jan. 24).

• Illinois also is in a stretch of playing four out of five games vs. ranked opponents. It began with a win at No. 9 Purdue on Dec. 30 and continued with a loss at No. 23 Michigan on Jan. 4. After the Indiana win last Saturday, Illinois defeated No. 25 Michigan on Wednesday. The run wraps up Saturday at No. 7 Michigan State.

• Illinois is 3-1 vs. ranked teams this season.

• Illinois recorded its 15th win of the 2008-09 season vs. Michigan on Wednesday. The Illini have already exceeded its regular-season win total from all of 2007-08 (13), and are now just win away from equaling last season's 16 victories.

• Illinois' 31-point margin of victory in Saturday's 76-45 win over Indiana was the Illini's largest over the Hoosiers in the 161-game history of the series.

Trent Meacham made 7-of-9 from 3-point range (77.8 percent) in the win over Indiana. That is the best 3-point shooting percentage by a BIg Ten player this season.

• Illinois has won 19 of its last 22 games dating back to the end of last season.

• Illinois leads the Big Ten and is 21st in the NCAA in field goal percentage, shooting 48.3 percent on the year. The Illini also rank 27th nationally in 3-point field goal percentage, shooting 39.2 percent from behind the arc.

• Illinois ranks second in the conference and 28th in the NCAA in scoring margin at +14.2 ppg.

• Four Illini are scoring in double figures, while eight players are averaging more than five points per game.

• Illinois' top three scorers are separated by a total of only seven points after 17 games.

• Illinois is the only Big Ten team with four players among the league's Top 25 scorers.

• Seven different players have been the Illini's leading scorer in a game this season.

• Three of Illinois' top four scorers are sophomores. In all, the UI sophomore class has scored 58.4 percent of its points on the season (704 of 1,205 pts).

• Illinois has trailed at halftime in only one game this season -- vs. Michigan on Wednesday -- and that deficit was only one point.

• Illinois ranks 11th in the nation and second in the Big Ten in scoring defense, allowing 56.6 ppg.

• Clemson (Dec. 2) and Michigan (Jan. 4) are the only two teams to top 70 points and shoot better than 46 percent against the Illini this season.

• Illinois has scored more bench points than the opposition in 13 of 17 games.

• In the latest NCAA statistical rankings released on Jan. 12, Chester Frazier ranks 11th in the nation in assist-to-turnover ratio and 16th in assists. He leads the Big Ten in assists, averaging 5.9 apg, and is fifth in the league with an a/to ratio of +2.5.

Mike Davis ranks second in the Big Ten in double-doubles this season with four, and is the leagues No. 4-ranked rebounder, averaging 7.5 boards. Davis has been the Illini's top rebounder in 12 games.

Trent Meacham has yet to commit a turnover after 123 minutes of Big Ten play.

• The UI starting guard trio of Chester Frazier, Demetri McCamey and Trent Meacham has a combined assist/turnover ratio of 3.47 in conference play (52 a/15 to).

Last Time Out: Michigan
Illinois trailed at halftime for the first time this season but dominated the second half to defeat No. 25 Michigan 66-51 on Wednesday night at the Assembly Hall. The Illini held Michigan to just 20 points on six field goals after intermission. Five of those six UM baskets were by Manny Harris, as the rest of the Wolverines combined to shoot 1of-21 in the second half.

In all, Illinois held Michigan to its season-low in both points (51) and field goal percentage (19-59, .322)

Mike Tisdale was dominant in the win, scoring 24 points -- one shy of his career high -- on 10-of-12 shooting. Tisdale scored 18 of his 24 in the second half. In the first half, it was Demetri McCamey who led the way, scoring 15 of his 17 points.

Offensive Turnaround
To better illustrate why Illinois is one of the nation's most improved teams compared to one year ago, the UI's improvement in a number of offensive statistics is staggering. Below is a list of Illinois' all-games stats this season compared to last season, with the Illini's Big Ten rank in each stat listed in parenthesis:

Category         2008-09     2007-08
FG Pct.          48.3 (1)    43.5 (7)
3FG Pct.         39.2 (3)    31.9 (10)
FT Pct.          73.2 (3)    60.8 (11)
Assists/Game     19.4 (1)    13.8 (5)
A/TO Ratio       1.51 (1)    1.01 (8)
Points/Game      70.9 (5)    63.6 (8)
Scoring Margin   +14.2 (2)   +2.5 (7)
Wins             15 (2)      16 (7)
Big Ten Wins     3 (3)       5 (9)

For complete set of Illinois men's basketball game notes, click on .pdf link at top of this page.