Men's Basketball
Illinois Game Notes vs. Michigan

 
Rich McBride is one of three Illinis seniors making their final Assembly Hall appearance on Wednesday, as Illinois hosts Michigan at 8 p.m. CT.
Rich McBride is one of three Illinis seniors making their final Assembly Hall appearance on Wednesday, as Illinois hosts Michigan at 8 p.m. CT.
 

Feb. 20, 2007

Champaign, Ill. -

Illinois Men's Basketball Game Notes vs. Michigan in PDF Format
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FIGHTING ILLINI BASKETBALL
Game #29: Illinois (19-9, 7-6) vs. Michigan (18-9, 6-6)
Feb. 21, 2007 • 8 p.m. CT • ESPNU
Champaign, Ill. • Assembly Hall (16,618)

On the Air
TV

ESPNU: Mike Gleason, play-by-play; Shon Morris, expert analyst.

Radio
Illini Sports Network - 47 stations: Brian Barnhart, play-by-play; Jerry Hester, expert analyst; Loren Tate pregame/halftime/ postgame interviews.

Illini Probable Starters
F - 42 Brian Randle (r-Jr, 6-8, 220, 7.7 ppg, 4.5 rpg, 1.2 apg)
F - 41 Warren Carter (Sr., 6-9, 220, 13.1 ppg, 6.2 rpg, 2.0 apg, 1.1 bpg)
C - 55 Shaun Pruitt (Jr., 6-10, 245, 11.1 ppg, 7.5 rpg)
G - 33 Rich McBride (Sr., 6-3, 205, 10.3 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 1.9 apg)
G - 3 Chester Frazier (So., 6-2, 190, 7.6 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 4.6 apg, 1.4 spg)

Off the Bench
G - 1 Trent Meacham (r-So., 6-2, 195, 5.4 ppg, 1.0 rpg, 1.9 apg)
G - 2 Chris Hicks (Jr., 6-2, 190, 0.4 ppg, 0.1 rpg)
C - 21 Brian Carlwell (Fr., 6-11, 265, 1.7 ppg, 1.4 rpg) -Out-
F - 25 Calvin Brock (r-So., 6-5, 195, 5.6 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 1.6 apg)
G - 31 Jamar Smith (So., 6-3, 185, 8.1 ppg, 1.6 rpg, 1.9 apg) -Out-
F - 34 C.J. Jackson (r-Fr., 6-8, 260, 1.4 ppg, 1.7 rpg)
F - 44 Marcus Arnold (r-Sr., 6-8, 245, 2.0 ppg, 1.3 rpg)
F - 50 Richard Semrau (Fr., 6-9, 230, 3.6 ppg, 2.2 rpg) -Out-

Illinois Head Coach Bruce Weber
Overall Record: 211-79/.728 (9th year)
At Illinois: 108-25/.812 (4th year)
Big Ten: 46-15/.754
Vs. Michigan: 4-2
Assistant Coaches: Wayne McClain (6th year), Jay Price (4th year), Tracy Webster (3rd year)
Assistant to the Head Coach: Gary Nottingham (4th year)
Trainer: Al Martindale (24th year at Illinois)

Michigan Head Coach: Tommy Amaker
Overall Record: 173-134/.564 (10th year)
At Michigan: 105-79/.571 (6th year)
Vs. Illinois All-Time: 2-10
Assistant Coaches: Mike Jackson, Andrew Moore, Dave Pilipovich

Series Notes: Michigan
Illinois leads the all-time series over Michigan 79-69, and owns a 51-23 advantage in games played in Champaign. After the Illini defeated the Wolverines 11 straight times from 2000-2006, Michigan has won the last two match-ups. Illinois has won the last nine games in the series played at the Assembly Hall, a streak that began in 1996.

Illini Seniors Honored vs. Michigan
Wednesday is Senior Night at the Assembly Hall, as Illinois honors departing seniors Marcus Arnold, Warren Carter and Rich McBride.

Arnold is a two-year letterwinner after transferring from Illinois State following his first two seasons. Arnold has career totals of 766 points and 344 rebounds. He scored a career-high 13 points last year vs. Missouri and had a season-high 12 points at Indiana on Feb. 10. Arnold will graduate in May with a degree in speech communications.

Carter is a four-year letterwinner. One of the most improved players in the Big Ten, Carter is Illinois' leading scorer (13.1 ppg) and second leading rebounder (6.2 rpg) this season. He has reached double figures 21 times this season, scoring a career-high 24 points at Arizona on Dec. 2 which is the highest point total by a UI player this year. His career totals are 602 points and 324 rebounds. Carter will graduate in May with a degree in community health.

McBride is a four-year letterwinner and two-year starter at shooting guard. He has been Illinois' third leading scorer the past two seasons, averaging 10 points last year and 10.3 points this year. He scored a season-high 18 points vs. IUPUI on Dec. 6 and has reached double figures 13 times on the season. McBride ranks fifth in school history with 202 career 3-pointers, and is the sixth winningest player in Illini history, having played in 100 victories during his career. He owns career totals of 767 points, 198 rebounds and 176 assists. McBride will finish coursework in May and will need only a summer internship to earn a degree in sport management.

Over the last four years, Illinois has compiled a record of 108-25 (.812), winning two outright Big Ten championships and one Big Ten Tournament championship, and making three straight NCAA Tournament appearances. This senior class advanced to the Sweet 16 in 2004, the NCAA Championship Game in 2005, and the Second Round last season.

Final Chief Performance Set
While Wednesday's contest vs. Michigan is the final home game of the season, it also marks the final halftime appearance of Chief Illiniwek, a tradition that spans 80 years. The University announced last Friday that the Chief will no longer perform at Illini sporting events.

Illini Headlines...
• With Illinois' final home game of the season coming up Wednesday, Feb. 21, it marks the earliest time (by calendar date) that the Illini will play their last home game in 56 years, since Illinois had its last home game on Feb. 19, 1951.

• Illinois is one win shy of reaching at least 20 victories for the eighth straight season, which would also be the program's 26th all-time 20-win season.

• Illinois has won four of its last five games and is above .500 in Big Ten play for the second time this season.

• Illinois ranks 16th in the NCAA in scoring defense (as of Feb. 15), holding its opponents to an average of just 58.0 points on the season.

• Illinois is 6-3 over its last nine Big Ten games after beginning conference play 1-3. Defense has been the biggest reason for the turnaround. Over the last nine games, Illinois is allowing an average of 52.7 points (474) on 39.9 percent shooting (174-436) and 23.4 percent 3-point shooting (34-145). Those numbers are a major improvement from the first four league games when the Illini allowed an average of 66.5 points (266) on 43.6 percent shooting (89-204) and 35.5 percent 3-point shooting (22-62).

• In conference games, Illinois leads the Big Ten in scoring defense (56.9) and 3-point field goal percentage defense (.271), and ranks third in field goal percentage defense (.406).

• Illinois held Northwestern to 37 points in its victory Sunday, tying the record for the fewest points scored by a Big Ten team in the 44-year history of the Assembly Hall.

Rich McBride has averaged 13.0 points (143) over the last 11 games after combining for just 7 points and making one 3-pointer over the previous three games. McBride scored 15 points against Iowa (Jan. 10), had a team-high 12 points at Michigan State (Jan. 14), nine points at Minnesota (Jan. 17), 15 points vs. Wisconsin (Jan. 20), a team-high 15 points vs. Indiana (Jan. 23), nine points at Purdue (Jan. 27), 12 points vs. Michigan State (Jan. 30), a team-high 13 points vs. Minnesota (Feb. 3), 15 points vs. Northwestern (Feb. 7), 13 points at Indiana (Feb. 10) and a game-high 15 points vs. Northwestern on Sunday.

• McBride is shooting 41.7 percent from 3-point range and is averaging 3.6 treys over the last 11 games (40-96).

• McBride leads the Big Ten in 3-point field goals during conference play with an average of 3.2 treys per game.

Shaun Pruitt has averaged 11.7 points (93) and 9.0 rebounds (72) over the last eight games, posting double-doubles in four of those seven contests. Pruitt tied his career high with 19 points and had 14 rebounds vs. Wisconsin (Jan. 20), had 10 points and 13 rebounds vs. Indiana (Jan. 23), 13 points and 11 boards at Purdue (Jan. 27), 15 points and five boards vs. Michigan State (Jan. 30), 12 points and six boards vs. Minnesota (Feb. 3) and 13 points and a career-high 15 rebounds vs. Northwestern on Feb. 7.

Brian Randle has shot 66.7 percent from the field (28-42) over the last nine games in which he has played, after making just 3-16 in the previous three games.

• Over his last 21 games, Warren Carter is averaging 13.9 points (291) and 6.4 rebounds (135). Included in that stretch have been three 20+ point performances for the senior power forward. Carter had a career-high 24 points vs. Arizona (Dec. 2), tying the highest point total by UI player this season, and 21 points vs. both IUPUI (Dec. 6) and Belmont (Dec. 17). During this stretch, Carter has been Illinois' leading scorer nine times and has reached double figures 18 times.

• In Big Ten home games, Rich McBride is averaging 12.7 points (89), while Shaun Pruitt is averaging 12.3 points (86) and 7.3 rebounds (51) .

Rich McBride stands in fifth place in Illinois history with 202 career 3-pointers. He needs seven treys to tie Luther Head for fourth on the list.

• Illinois has started seven different lineups this season. Last season, the Illini started the same lineup in 32 of 33 games and two seasons ago, Illinois had the same starting lineup in all 39 games.

• Illinois has had six players miss a combined total of 44 games so far this season due to injury (Richard Semrau-23, Brian Randle-11, Jamar Smith-6, Chester Frazier-2, Warren Carter-1, Brian Carlwell-1).

• In seven of its nine losses, Illinois has led during the second half.

• Illinois extended its school-record streak of consecutive sell-out crowds at the Assembly Hall (16,618) to 44 against Northwestern on Sunday.

• Illinois won its 17th straight game over Minnesota on Feb. 3, a streak that spans the last eight-plus seasons, beginning with the 1999 Big Ten Tournament Quarterfinal. It is the longest active winning streak by any Big Ten school over a conference opponent. It also marks the longest winning streak in Illini history over a Big Ten opponent. Illinois' previous best conference winning streaks were a pair of 16-game streaks over Northwestern (1/11/47-3/5/55 & 2/4/84-3/2/91 and one 16-game streak over Wisconsin (2/12/81-1/12/89).

• In its victory over No. 23 Indiana on Jan. 23, the Illini held the Hoosiers to a season-low 43 points. It marked the fewest points Illinois has allowed to a ranked opponent in conference play in 22 years, since defeating No. 13 Indiana 52-41 on Jan. 27, 1985.

• Illinois is a balanced offensive club, with six players averaging at least 7.6 points and eight members of the roster averaging at least 5.4 points per game.

• Seven different players have been Illinois' leading scorer in a game this season (Warren Carter-10, Shaun Pruitt-6, Rich McBride-5, Jamar Smith-5, Chester Frazier-2, Trent Meacham-2, Brian Randle-1).

Shaun Pruitt ranks second in the Big Ten in rebounding (7.5 rpg) and offensive rebounds (3.1 rpg) and is third in field goal percentage (.545, 127-233).

Chester Frazier ranks fourth in the Big Ten in assists with an average of 4.7 apg. He had a career-high 11 assists vs. Bradley (Nov. 25) and again vs. IUPUI (Dec. 6), and also had 10 assists vs. Florida A&M (Nov. 19).

Trent Meacham ranks eighth in the Big Ten in 3-point shooting at 41.9 percent (31-74). He had a school-record eight 3-pointers vs. Florida A&M (Nov. 19), which is also the most treys by a Big Ten player this year.

• Illinois' leading scorer, Warren Carter ranks 14th in the league with an average of 13.1 points. Carter is also seventh in the conference in rebounding, averaging 6.2 rpg, and 11th in blocks, averaging 1.1 bpg.

Shaun Pruitt has scored in double figures in 19 games this season and is second on the team in scoring at 11.1 ppg. He scored a career-high 19 points vs. Missouri (Dec. 19) and vs. Wisconsin (Jan. 20).

• Pruitt leads the Illini with eight double-doubles on the season.

Calvin Brock has scored at least six points in 14 games.

• Illinois leads the Big Ten in offensive rebounds (12.9 rpg).

• The Illini are third in the Big Ten in 3-pointers, making an average of 7.0 per game.

• Illinois has scored over 70 points in 13 games.

• Illinois has shot better than 45 percent in 11 games, topping 50 percent seven times.

• Illinois has outrebounded 16 opponents and is outrebounding its opponent by an average of 5.1 boards (fourth in Big Ten).

Last Time Out: Northwestern
Points were at a premium on Sunday, as Illinois defeated Northwestern 48-37 to collect its fourth victory in the last five games. The Wildcats' total of 37 tied the record for fewest points by a Big Ten team in the 44-year history of the Assembly Hall.

Illinois trailed by two early in the second half but went on an 8-0 run on a dunk by Warren Carter and back-to-back 3-pointers by Rich McBride to take a six-point lead. The Illini led the rest of the way, outscoring Northwestern 25-15 after intermission.

McBride reached double figures for the fifth straight game, nailing five treys for a game-high 15 points. Carter scored all 10 of his points in the second half while Shaun Pruitt added eight.

Illini Rewriting Attendance Records
Illinois will tie or break a number of attendance records this season. There have been 16 sell-out crowds this season at the Assembly Hall, which ties the school record set last year for most sell-outs in a season. With Wednesday's game vs. Michigan already sold out, the Illini will break that record with a total of 17 sell-outs this year.

Illinois will also break the record for highest total attendance in a season. That record is currently 271,375 set in 1979-80. Illinois currently stands at 265,888, and when factoring in the sell-out vs. Michigan, the Illini will finish the year with a record 282,506 fans passing through the turnstiles.

Illinois will also tie the record for highest average attendance for a season, with the sell-out average of 16,618 equaling last year's record.

Defense Is The Difference
Illinois has won six of its last nine games after beginning Big Ten play with one win through its first four games. The reason for Illinois' turnaround has been a commitment to defense, and the numbers back it up. Illinois is giving up an average of just 52.7 points over the last nine games, holding opponents to just 39.2 percent shooting and 23.4 percent shooting from 3-point range.

Illinois now leads the Big Ten in scoring defense (56.9 ppg) and 3-point field goal percentage defense (.271) in conference games and ranks third in field goal percentage defense (.406).

Below is a statistical comparison of Illinois' defensive effort in Big Ten play over the last nine games compared to the first four games:

Illini Opponents In First Four Big Ten Games (UI, 1-3)
             FG     3 FG    Pts    Reb
Totals     89-204   22-62   266    142
Pct./Avg.   .436    .355    66.5   35.5

Illini Opponents In Last Nine Big Ten Games (UI, 6-3) FG 3 FG Pts Reb Totals 171-436 34-145 474 268 Pct./Avg. .392 .234 52.7 29.8

Assembly Hall: The House of 'Paign
The Illini have put together one of the most dominating homecourt records in the nation in recent years, owning a record of 106-7 (.938) at the Assembly Hall this decade. The Illini are also 55-5 (.917) at The Hall during Bruce Weber's four-year tenure.

Illinois had its nation's best 51-game winning streak at the Assembly Hall against non-conference opponents come to an end against Maryland on Nov. 28. The Illini's school-record 33-game homecourt winning streak ended last year against Penn State (Feb. 4, 2006).

Below is a look at Illinois' record at the Assembly Hall this decade:

Year        Overall	Big Ten
2006-07       13-3           5-2
2005-06       15-1           7-1
2004-05       15-0           8-0
2003-04       12-1           7-1
2002-03       14-0           7-0
2001-02       13-1           7-1
2000-01       12-0           8-0
1999-2000     12-1           7-1
Total      106-7 (.938)   56-6 (.903)

Illini By the Numbers Under Weber
Illinois has been a consistent winner under Bruce Weber, a tenure that spans the most successful period in school history. The following is a breakdown of Illinois' success under Weber:

• 108-25: Illinois' overall record under Weber, a winning percentage of .812.

• 55-5: Illinois' record at the Assembly Hall under Weber, a winning percentage of .917.

• 37-2: Illinois' record in 2004-05, which tied the record for the winningest season in NCAA history.

• 26-7: Illinois' record last season as well as Weber's first season (2003-04), which tie the fourth-winningest season in school history.

• 19-9: Illinois' record this season.

• 46-15: Illinois' record in Big Ten play under Weber - which incudes back-to-back outright championships in 2004 and 2005 - a winning percentage of .754.

• 95-20: Illinois' record in regular season games under Weber, a winning percentage of .826.

• 49-5: Illinois' record in regular season non-conference games under Weber, a winning percentage of .907.

• 22-11: Illinois' record in road games under Weber, a winning percentage of .667.

• 30-8: Illinois' record in neutral-site games under Weber, a winning percentage of .789.

• 8-3: Illinois' NCAA Tournament record under Weber - which includes a trip to the Sweet 16 in 2004 and the program's first-ever appearance in the national championship game in 2005 - a winning percentage of .727.

• 5-2: Illinois' Big Ten Tournament record under Weber - which includes the 2005 tournament title - a winning percentage of .714.

• 13-5: Illinois' combined postseason record under Weber, a winning percentage of .722.

Carter Aiming High As A Senior
One of the most improved players in the Big Ten, Warren Carter is having an outstanding senior season. The replacement for James Augustine at power forward, Carter has started all 27 games that he has played in this year and leads the team in scoring with an average of 13.1 points (14th in Big Ten). He has reached double figures 21 times, led by a career-high 24 points on 11-17 shooting vs. Arizona (Dec. 2).

Carter has topped the 20-point marker three times on the season, with a game-high 21 points vs. IUPUI (Dec. 6) and another 21-point effort vs. Belmont (Dec. 17).

Carter had 17 points vs. Bradley (Nov. 25). He also had eight rebounds vs. the Braves and had eight points, three blocks and three steals vs. Miami (OH) the night before to earn a spot on the Chicago Invitational All-Tournament Team.

Carter started strong against Maryland (Nov. 28), scoring all 13 of his points in the first half, while tallying a double-double with 11 boards.

Carter suffered a hip injury at the end of the Missouri game and did not play against Idaho State on Dec. 21. He returned to the lineup vs. Xavier (Dec. 29) and scored 14 points with five boards. He again had 14 points with eight boards vs. Michigan (Jan. 3) and had 11 pts-8 reb vs. Ohio State (Jan. 6).

Carter had 16 points vs. Iowa (Jan. 10) on 6-7 shooting, had 11 vs. Michigan State (Jan. 14) and reached double figures for the eighth straight game with a team-best 17 points at Minnesota (Jan. 17), also collecting 11 rebounds against the Gophers for his fourth double-double of the season.

Carter's double figures streak came to an end vs. Wisconsin (Jan. 20) when he had nine points, but he bounced back with 14 points vs. Indiana (Jan. 23).

After scoring 12 points at Purdue (Jan. 27), he had 10 vs. Minnesota (Feb. 3), a game-high 17 vs. Northwestern (Feb. 7), a team-high 14 vs. Indiana (Feb. 10) and 10 vs. Northwestern on Sunday.

Carter is second on the team in rebounding behind Pruitt, averaging 6.2 rpg to rank seventh in the Big Ten. He had the first double-double of his career vs. Jackson State (Nov. 15) with 16 points and a career-high 15 rebounds.

Over his last 21 games, Carter is averaging 13.9 points and 6.4 rebounds. During that stretch, Carter has been Illinois' leading scorer nine times and has reached double figures 18 times.

Pruitt A Consistent Contributor
Shaun Pruitt started every game last season and is once again the Illini's starting center this year. The only player to start all 28 games this season, Pruitt has scored in double figures in 19 games and is second on the team in scoring with an average of 11.1 points.

Pruitt leads the Illini and is second in the Big Ten in rebounding with an average of 7.5 boards and has been an efficient scorer, shooting 54.5 percent from the field (127-233) to rank third in the Big Ten. He has eight double-doubles on the season to lead all Illini players.

Pruitt had 15 points on 7-9 shooting vs. Jackson State (Nov. 15) and recorded the first double-double of his career with 10 points and 10 rebounds vs. Savannah State (Nov. 21).

He earned Chicago Invitational Challenge All-Tournament Team honors after posting a double-double with 12 points and 10 boards vs. Miami (OH) (Nov. 24) followed by 16 points and nine rebounds vs. Bradley (Nov. 25).

Pruitt was at his best vs. Maryland (Nov. 28), scoring 18 points on 7-12 shooting. He tallied his third double-double of the season against the Terrapins, collecting 11 rebounds in addition to his 18 points.

Pruitt scored in double figures for the sixth straight game vs. Arizona (Dec. 2), registering 11 points. That streak came to an end with seven points vs. IUPUI (Dec. 6), but Pruitt was back in double figures with 13 points vs. Belmont (Dec. 17).

He then scored a career-high 19 points on 8-11 shooting and had a game-high nine boards vs. Missouri (Dec. 19). He finished non-conference play with 11 points and 11 boards vs. Xavier (Dec. 29).

Pruitt had 16 points on 7-8 shooting vs. Iowa (Jan. 10) and had 10 points and a game-high seven rebounds at Michigan State (Jan. 14).

Pruitt reached double figures in six straight games, a streak that was broken against Indiana last Saturday. During that stretch, he recorded double-doubles in four contests. He had the best game of his career vs. Wisconsin (Jan. 20), tying his career high with 19 points and pulling down 14 rebounds. He then had 10 points and a game-high 13 rebounds vs. Indiana (Jan. 23) and had 13 points and a game-high 11 rebounds at Purdue (Jan. 27).

Pruitt had 15 points and five boards vs. Michigan State (Jan. 30), 12 points and six boards vs. Minnesota (Feb. 3) and 13 points and a career-high 15 rebounds at Northwestern (Feb. 7).

Over the last eight games, Pruitt is averaging 11.7 points and 9.0 rebounds.

McBride's Experience an Asset
Senior Rich McBride started off slow after missing the season's first four games, but he has re-established himself as one of Illinois' top performers. McBride had a season-high 18 points vs. IUPUI (Dec. 6), hitting six 3-pointers, and had a team-high 13 points vs. UIC (Dec. 9).

After coming off the bench the previous two games, McBride returned to the starting lineup against Iowa on Jan. 10 and made his presence felt, scoring 15 points on a season-high five 3-pointers. He then had a team-high 12 points on four treys at Michigan State (Jan. 14).

McBride had nine points at Minnesota (Jan. 17), 15 points vs. Wisconsin (Jan. 20), a game-high 15 points vs. Indiana (Jan. 23) and nine points at Purdue (Jan. 30)

He has reached double figures the last five games, with 12 points vs. Michigan State (Jan. 30) a team-high 13 points vs. Minnesota (Feb. 3), 15 at Northwestern (Feb. 7), 13 vs. Indiana (Feb. 10) and a game-high 15 vs. Northwestern on Sunday.

McBride has been Illinois' most consistent player over the past 11 games, averaging 13.0 points (143) while shooting 41.7 percent from 3-point range (40-96).

McBride has started 20 of 24 games on the season and ranks third on the team in scoring, averaging 10.3 points. He ranks third in the Big Ten with an average of 2.8 three-pointers per game (68 total) and is also averaging 1.9 assists. In conference play, McBride leads the Big Ten with an average of 3.2 three-pointers.

McBride ranks fifth in school history with 202 career 3-pointers. At his current pace, McBride should end his career ranked fourth on the Illini all-time 3-pointers list.

McBride has also been credited by the UI coaching staff for improving his defense greatly over the course of his career to the point where he is now considered the Illini's top perimeter defender. He has consistently drawn the assignment of guarding the opposition's top scorer throughout conference play and is a candidate for the Big Ten All-Defensive Team.

Frazier On Point
Chester Frazier has taken over the reins at point guard following the graduation of Dee Brown. The sophomore from Baltimore has been very productive in all facets of the game. He is averaging 7.6 points and ranks fourth in the Big Ten with an average of 4.7 assists. Frazier is also third on the Illini with an average of 4.6 rebounds and leads the team in steals, averaging 1.4 spg (seventh in Big Ten).

Frazier has scored in double figures in 11 games, led by a career-high 17 points vs. Savannah State (Nov. 21) and Michigan State (Jan. 30). He recorded his first career double-double vs. Florida A&M (Nov. 19) with 13 points and 10 assists.

Frazier had 10 points vs. Miami (OH) (Nov. 24), hitting a game-winning layup with 18 seconds left. He then recorded his second double-double vs. Bradley (Nov. 25) with 10 points and a career-high 11 assists. Frazier was named MVP of the Chicago Invitational Challenge.

He had 11 points and four assists in 39 minutes of action vs. Arizona (Dec. 2) and then tied his career high with another 11-assist effort vs. IUPUI (Dec. 6).

Frazier scored 13 points on 4-6 shooting from 3-point range against Idaho State (Dec. 21) and had 11 in the Big Ten opener at Michigan (Jan. 3).

One of the toughest players to wear the Illini uniform in recent years, Frazier has battled through a number of injuries during his career. After starting the first 17 games this season, he was finally sidelined against Iowa (Jan. 10) due to a strained groin. He returned to the court against Michigan State on Jan. 10, scoring eight points and collecting four assists and a career-high four steals in 25 minutes of action.

Frazier had nine points and five boards vs. Wisconsin (Jan. 20).

Frazier was questionable just minutes before the game vs. Michigan State on Jan. 30 due to a turf toe injury, but came off the bench to tie his career-high with 17 points on 6-8 shooting. He also pulled down a game-high six rebounds in 26 minutes. Following that performance, he sat out the game vs. Minnesota on Feb. 3 due to the toe injury.

Frazier returned to the court at Northwestern (Feb. 7), scoring six points in 19 minutes. While he did not score at Indiana on Feb. 10, he did pull down a career-high 10 rebounds with five assists and three steals.

He bounced back from his latest mishap, a dislocated finger on Saturday, to collect a game-high seven rebounds and six assists vs. Northwestern on Sunday.

While continuing to rack up the assists this year, Frazier has also done a good job limiting turnovers. After totaling 13 turnovers in the first two games (6.5 avg.), he has combined for just 58 turnovers over his past 24 games (2.4 avg.). He had only one turnover in 35 minutes vs. Bradley compared to 11 assists, and had just one turnover again vs. Maryland (Nov. 28).

Randle Battling Through Season of AdversityBrian Randle returned to action against UIC on Dec. 9. He played 16 minutes off the bench and performed well, nearly registering a double-double with nine points and nine rebounds.

Randle scored 10 against both Belmont (Dec. 17) and Missouri (Dec. 19) and had 11 points vs. Idaho State on Dec. 21.

Randle had a break-out game against Iowa on Jan. 10. He tied his career high with 16 points on 7-9 shooting and dished out a career-high six assists. He had two dunks that brought the Assembly Hall crowd to its feet, one of which made Sportscenter's Top 10 Plays of the Day. It marked the third time of his career that a Randle dunk has appeared on ESPN's Top 10 list.

After scoring eight at Michigan State (Jan. 14), Randle was back in double figures with 12 points on 5-7 shooting at Minnesota (Jan. 17). He then had eight points vs. Wisconsin on Jan. 20.

Randle fought through pain in his foot in January (due to plantar fasciitis) before returning to the sidelines and sitting out two games (Indiana, Jan. 23 and Purdue, Jan. 27).

He returned to action vs. Michigan State (Jan. 30), but was limited to just 20 minutes. He had six points and a game-high eight rebounds vs. Minnesota (Feb. 3), eight points at Indiana (Feb. 10) and most recently had six points and six rebounds vs. Northwestern on Sunday.

Over the last nine games in which he has played, Randle is shooting 66.7 percent from the field (28-42).

Randle is averaging 7.7 points (fifth on team) and 4.5 rebounds (fourth on team) on the season and is shooting 54.4 percent from the field.

Hometown Hero
Trent Meacham starred at Champaign Centennial High School and initially went to Dayton on a full scholarship. After playing as a true freshman at Dayton in 2004-05, Meacham returned to Illini country, choosing to walk-on to the Illinois squad. Meacham sat out last season as a transfer and has been awarded a scholarship for this season.

After an injury to Jamar Smith in the season opener vs. Austin Peay, Meacham found himself in the starting lineup just two days later, playing all 40 minutes vs. Jackson State (Nov. 15), scoring eight points with a career-high six assists.

Meacham was Illinois' leading scorer for two straight games with 19 points vs. Georgia Southern (Nov. 17) followed by a career-high 24 points vs. Florida A&M (Nov. 19). He tied the school record for 3-pointers in a game with eight vs. FAMU en route to his 24 points. His eight treys vs. FAMU are the most by a Big Ten player in a game this season.

Meacham scored 12 points vs. IUPUI (Dec. 6), and had 11 vs. Xavier (Dec. 29).

Meacham returned to the starting lineup against Iowa (Jan. 10) and started four straight games before resuming his role as a reserve vs. Indiana (Jan. 23). He had his best Big Ten game at Minnesota (Jan. 17), scoring 12 points and dishing out five assists in 32 minutes.

Meacham ranks eighth in the Big Ten in 3-point field goal shooting at 41.9 percent (31-74), and is averaging 5.4 points and assists (1.9 apg) on the season.

Brock Stepping Up
Sophomore Calvin Brock has made great strides since arriving on campus and it's showing this season. In his first career start, Brock totaled 14 points on 6-9 shooting with six rebounds vs. Jackson State (Nov. 15). He had 17 points on 7-11 shooting vs. Georgia Southern (Nov. 17), and tallied the first double-double of his career vs. Florida A&M (Nov. 19) with career highs of 18 points and 10 rebounds along with a career-best seven assists.

After scoring eight vs. Bradley (Nov. 25), Brock was back in double figures with 11 points vs. Maryland (Nov. 28). He had eight points and eight rebounds vs. Arizona (Dec. 2) and played a great all-around game vs. IUPUI (Dec. 6) with 11 points, eight rebounds, seven assists and three steals.

Brock was also credited by Weber as the catalyst in Illinois' come-from-behind victory over Idaho State on Dec. 21. The Illini trailed by six points midway through the second half before Brock started a rally that brought Illinois ahead for good. In just 15 minutes, Brock scored seven points on 3-3 shooting and had a team-high seven rebounds.

He had six points off the bench at Indiana (Feb. 10) and had a game-high seven rebounds vs. Northwestern on Sunday.

Brock has started nine games this season and is averaging 5.6 points. He is fifth on the Illini in rebounding, averaging 4.1 boards and is tied for second with 51 offensive rebounds. Brock is shooting 45.5 percent from the field and is averaging 1.6 assists.

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

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