2008 Olympic Gold Medalist Deron Williams and USA Basketball Men's Senior National Team Managing Director Jerry Colangelo during the halftime ceremonies at A Night of Legends.
Sept. 13, 2008
Champaign, Ill. - It was an incredible atmosphere Saturday night at the Assembly Hall, as 15,417 fans cheered some of their all-time favorites at A Night of Legends alumni basketball game. The game saw the "Blue" team defeat the "White" by the score of 84-70, but highlights from the evening went well beyond the game itself.
The Illini Blue team, coached by former UI assistant coach Jimmy Collins, was led by honorary captains from the 2005 Final Four Team Deron Williams, Dee Brown, Luther Head and Roger Powell. Williams led all scorers with 19 points while Powell added 13 and Luther Head also reached double figures with 11.
The Illini White team, coached by former Illinois head coach Lou Henson, was led by honorary captains from the 1989 Final Four Team Nick Anderson, Kendall Gill, Kenny Battle, Marcus Liberty, Stephen Bardo and Ervin Small. Gill led the White squad with 14 points while Anderson tallied 13.
Prior to the start of the game, all of the 29 players participating in the event gathered at midcourt for a commemorative photo. Player introductions followed, and the game began with a special jumpball ceremony featuring the 10 Illini on hand that played in the Final Four.
The attention of the players as well as the fans turned to the videoboard at timeouts, as some of the greatest moments in Illinois basketball history were shown. Included in the highlight moments were Deron Williams' 3-pointer against Arizona to force overtime in the 2005 NCAA Elite Eight, Frank Williams' game-winning layup at Minnesota to win the 2002 Big Ten Championship, Luther Head's game-winning putback at Purdue to clinch the 2004 Big Ten title, and Nick Anderson's game-winning 30-footer to defeat Indiana in 1989.
Halftime began with an Olympic tribute to Williams and Jerry Colangelo as Williams donned his gold medal, followed by remarks from both Williams and Colangelo as well as Illini head coach Bruce Weber.
At the conclusion of the game, a video was shown of the 30 players selected to have their jerseys honored, and the event wrapped up with the official unveiling of the banners.
The point totals from the game as well as a complete list of the Illinois Basketball Honored Jerseys can be found below.
A Nights of Legends Scoring Totals Blue Team 84 5 Deron Williams 19 43 Roger Powell 13 4 Luther Head 11 24 Sean Harrington 9 5 Nate Mast 8 11 Dee Brown 6 12 Joe Cross 5 2 Chris Hicks 4 00 Brett Melton 3 3 Arias Davis 2 42 Herb Caldwell 2 44 Rich Beyers 2 Coach: Jimmy Collins, Assistant Coach, 1984-96
White Team 70 13 Kendall Gill 14 25 Nick Anderson 13 40 Sergio McClain 8 34 Brian Cook 6 22 Kiwane Garris 6 30 Marcus Liberty 5 30 Frank Williams 5 40 Jerry Hester 3 52 Marcus Griffin 3 23 Ervin Small 3 25 Bryant Notree 2 22 Lucas Johnson 2 35 Stephen Bardo 0 13 Cory Bradford 0 25 Jerrance Howard 0 10 Jelani Boline 0 33 Kenny Battle DNP Coach: Lou Henson, Head Coach, 1976-96
The University of Illinois is honoring its most decorated basketball players in school history by hanging a banner with their name and number from the roof of the Assembly Hall. A total of 30 men's players have earned a spot on this distinguished list and their jerseys were unveiled for the first time tonight. Players selected to have their jerseys hung must have achieved one of the following criteria: 1) National Player of the Year; 2) Enshrined in the National Basketball Hall of Fame; 3) U.S. Olympian; 4) Big Ten Player of the Year; 5) Consensus First- or Second-Team All-American; 6) Illinois All-Century Team Member.
Ray Woods 1915-17 Evanston, Ill. 1917 Helms Foundation National Player of the Year Illinois All-Century Team
Chuck Carney 1920-22 Evanston, Ill. 1922 Helms Foundation National Player of the Year Illinois All-Century Team
Bill Hapac 1938-40 Chicago, Ill. 1940 Consensus First-Team All-American
Andy Phillip 1942-43, 47 Granite City, Ill. National Basketball Hall of Fame 1942 & 1943 Consensus First-Team All-American 1947 Consensus Second Team All-American Illinois All-Century Team
Gene Vance 1942-43, 47 Clinton, Ill. Illinois All-Century Team
Walt Kirk 1944-45, 47 Mt. Vernon, Ill. 1945 Consensus First-Team All-American
Dike Eddleman 1947-49 Centralia, Ill. 1949 Big Ten Most Valuable Player Illinois All-Century Team
Bill Erickson 1947-50 Rockford, Ill. 1949 Consensus Second-Team All-American
Don Sunderlage 1949-51 Elgin, Ill. 1951 Big Ten Most Valuable Player
Rod Fletcher 1950-52 Champaign, Ill. 1952 Consensus First-Team All-American
John "Red" Kerr 1952-54 Chicago, Ill. 1954 Big Ten Most Valuable Player Illinois All-Century Team
Jerry Colangelo 1960-62 Chicago Heights, Ill. National Basketball Hall of Fame
Dave Downey 1961-63 Canton, Ill. Illinois All-Century Team
Skip Thoren 1963-65 Rockford, Ill. Illinois All-Century Team
Don Freeman 1964-66 Madison, Ill. Illinois All-Century Team
Jim Dawson 1965-67 Elmhurst, Ill. 1967 Big Ten Most Valuable Player
Nick Weatherspoon 1971-73 Canton, Ohio Illinois All-Century Team
Eddie Johnson 1978-81 Chicago, Ill. Illinois All-Century Team
Derek Harper 1981-83 W. Palm Beach, Fla. Illinois All-Century Team
Bruce Douglas 1983-86 Quincy, Ill. 1984 Big Ten Player of the Year Illinois All-Century Team
Ken Norman 1985-87 Chicago, Ill. 1987 Consensus Second-Team All-American Illinois All-Century Team
Nick Anderson 1988-89 Chicago, Ill. Illinois All-Century Team
Kenny Battle 1988-89 Aurora, Ill. Illinois All-Century Team
Kendall Gill 1987-90 Matteson, Ill. 1990 Consensus Second-Team All-American Illinois All-Century Team
Deon Thomas 1991-94 Chicago, Ill. Illinois All-Century Team
Frank Williams 2000-02 Peoria, Ill. 2001 Big Ten Player of the Year Illinois All-Century Team
Brian Cook 2000-03 Lincoln, Ill. 2003 Big Ten Player of the Year Illinois All-Century Team
Luther Head 2002-05 Chicago, Ill. 2005 Consensus Second-Team All-American
Deron Williams 2003-05 The Colony, Texas U.S. Olympian 2005 Consensus Second-Team All-American
Dee Brown 2003-06 Maywood, Ill. 2005 Sporting News National Player of the Year 2005 Big Ten Player of the Year 2005 Consensus First-Team All-American 2006 Consensus Second-Team All-American