Game 4 Notes & Links: Illinois vs. Bradley
Nov. 16, 2013
Series Notes vs. Bradley
Illinois is aiming for a 4-0 start for the third consecutive season.
Joseph Bertrand is the only player still on the UI roster from the last time Illinois and Bradley played - a 72-68 BU victory. Bertrand was on the Illini bench, sitting out as that season as a redshirt.
This is the first Illinois-Bradley game in Champaign in 16 years, since a 69-59 UI win on Nov. 17, 1997.
Three Illini have scored in double figures in all three games this season. Rayvonte Rice was the UI's leading scorer vs. Alabama State (22 points) and Valparaiso (18) and added 13 vs. Jacksonville State. Joseph Bertrand had a season-high 20 points vs. Jacksonville State and had 14 each vs. Alabama State and Valparaiso. Nnanna Egwu, meanwhile, has been consistent, totaling 10 points against each of the three opponents.
The game will be televised tape-delay. The BTN is scheduled to air the Illinois-Bradley game on Monday (Nov. 18) at 2 p.m.
Illinois has one more game that will be streamed as part of the BTDN; the Dartmouth contest on Dec. 10.
Ford Brothers Reunite
This is not the first time the Fords are on opposing sidelines, however. Prior to taking over at Bradley, Geno was head coach at Kent State for three seasons. Dustin also was in the Mid-American Conference at that time, serving as an assistant coach at Ohio for John Groce.
Notes from Wednesday's Win over Valparaiso
2. Illinois won its 25th straight non-conference game at State Farm Center, and extended its home court winning streak in regular-season non-conference games to 36 in a row.
3. Illinois is now 11-0 in November under head coach John Groce, and overall has won its last 22 games in the month of November.
4. Owning a two-point lead (49-47) with under five minutes left, Illinois finished the game by outscoring the Crusaders 15-5, led by a 13-1 run that made the score 62-48 with 37 seconds remaining.
5. The Illini never trailed in the game and have not trailed over the past 117:05 of 120 minutes this season after only falling behind briefly in the opening minutes of the season opener against Alabama State.
6. UI overcame its third-lowest shooting performance (31.8 percent) under coach Groce thanks to stingy defense that held the Crusaders to just 32.7 percent (17-of-52) from the field.
7. Rayvonte Rice led the Orange and Blue in scoring for the second time in three games with a game-high 18 points.
8. Illinois won the rebounding battle 49-36, led by Jon Ekey, who grabbed a career-high 15 rebounds (8 offensive), marking the most by an Illini since Meyers Leonard had 16 boards vs. Cornell (Dec. 19, 2011). Ekey's previous career best at Illinois State was 13 rebounds, which he totaled twice.
10. Former Illini great Roger Powell Jr., who is now in his third season as an assistant coach at Valparaiso, was on the opposing bench. Powell played at Illinois from 2002-05, helping the Illini to three Big Ten titles and 114 wins during his career. He totaled 1,178 points with the Orange and Blue, currently ranked 32nd on the school's all-time scoring list.