Illinois Game Notes vs. Miami (OH)
Dec. 19, 2007
Champaign, Ill. -
FIGHTING ILLINI BASKETBALL
On the Air
Illini Probable Starters
Off the Bench
Illinois Head Coach Bruce Weber
Miami Head Coach: Charlie Coles
Series Notes: Miami
Illini Notes ...
Thursday's game vs. Miami marks just the fourth time in 10 games this season that Illinois will play at the Assembly Hall. Illinois has played a total of six road/neutral games, the third-highest total among BCS schools.
In three home games, Illinois' defense is holding opponents to an average of 50.3 points (151) on 32.5 percent shooting from the field (52-160) and 23.2 percent from 3-point range (13-56). Opponents are also averaging 19.0 turnovers (57).
Just nine games into the season, seven different players have been the Illini's leading scorer in a game.
Illinois' defense held Western Carolina to 35 points on Monday, the third-lowest point total in Assembly Hall history and just one point off the record-low score of 34 set by Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 1985 and tied by Savannah State last season.
Trent Meacham is averaging 17 points and is shooting 61.5 percent from the field (24-39) and 52.2 percent from 3-point range (12-23) over the last four games in which he has played (missed Monday's game vs. Western Carolina with an ankle injury). He has also totaled 14 assists with only four turnovers (3.5 a/to ratio), along with eight steals over that span.
Shaun Pruitt has scored at least nine points in all but one game this season. He had a career-high 24 points vs. Arizona and made 10-of-11 from the field, tying the sixth-best shooting performance in school history.
Pruitt has scored in double figures in each of the last two games, with 24 points vs. Arizona and 11 vs. Western Carolina. It is the first time he has reached double figures in back-to-back games since the first two games of the season (12 points vs. Northeastern and 15 at Hawaii).
Calvin Brock is averaging 10.7 points on 50.9 percent shooting from the field (27-53) and 54.5 percent from 3-point range (6-11) over the last six games.
Chester Frazier is averaging 5.5 assists over the last four games after averaging just 2.6 assists over the first five games.
Mike Tisdale is averaging 8.3 points on 63.2 percent shooting over the last three games. He is coming off a career-high 13 points on 6-7 shooting vs. Western Carolina.
Trent Meacham ranks second in the Big Ten in assist-to-turnover ratio with a 3.7 ratio on the season (26 assists/7 turnovers).
Shaun Pruitt leads the Big Ten in offensive rebounds with an average of 3.8 per game (34 total off. reb.).
Pruitt has started every game over the past two-and-a-half seasons, entering the Miami game with an active streak of 77 consecutive starts.
Illinois is averaging 17.8 assists per game over the last four games after averaging just 12.6 apg through the first five games. The Illini had a season's best 23 assists vs. Arizona on Dec. 8.
Most Road/Neutral Games by BCS Schools (thru 12/18) T1. Georgia Tech ACC 7 T1. North Carolina ACC 7 T3. Providence Big East 6 T3. South Florida Big East 6 T3. ILLINOIS Big Ten 6 T3. Michigan Big Ten 6 T3. Colorado Big XII 6 T3. USC Pac-10 6 T3. Washington State Pac-10 6 T3. Auburn SEC 6Illinois' three home games through Dec. 18 are also the fewest among Big Ten teams. The next lowest total is five home games by two league teams:
Most Home Games by Big Ten Schools (thru 12/18) T1. Wisconsin 8 T1. Iowa 8 3. Indiana 7 T4. Michigan State 6 T4. Minnesota 6 T4. Ohio State 6 T4. Penn State 6 T4. Purdue 6 T9. Michigan 5 T9. Northwestern 5 11. ILLINOIS 3Last Time Out: Western Carolina
Illinois relied on its defense in a 58-35 victory over Western Carolina Monday night at the Assembly Hall. Taking the court for the first time after an eight-day break for semester exams, the Illini held the Catamounts to 27 percent shooting and the third-lowest point total in Assembly Hall history, just one point off the record-low score of 34 set by Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 1985 and tied by Savannah State last season.
The Illini' 23-point margin of victory equaled its largest of the season. Mike Tisdale scored a career-high 13 points on 6-7 shooting to lead the UI, while Shaun Pruitt also reached double figures with 11 points.
Illini Own Nation's Best Homecourt Record This Decade at The Assembly Hall: The House of 'Paign
Below is a look at Illinois' record at the Assembly Hall this decade:
Year Overall Big Ten 2007-08 3-0 0-0 2006-07 14-3 6-2 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 110-7 (.940) 58-6 (.906)Following is a list of the NCAA Div. I teams with the best homecourt records this decade (courtesy of Allan Spear, STATS):
School Record .Pct Next 1. ILLINOIS 110-7 .940 Dec. 20 2. Gonzaga 100-7 .935 Dec. 31 3. Kansas 121-10 .924 Dec. 22 4. Michigan State 119-10 .922 Dec. 19 5. Utah State 116-10 .921 Dec. 20 6. Wisconsin 121-11 .917 Dec. 22 7. Duke 117-11 .914 Jan. 6 8. Texas 120-12 .909 Dec. 29 9. BYU 111-12 .902 Dec. 21 10. Southern Illinois 101-11 .902 Dec. 22Dominating the Glass
Illinois has outrebounded seven of nine opponents this year and owns a rebounding margin of +6.2 on the season. Illinois ranks fourth in the Big Ten in rebounding margin and is fifth in the conference in total rebounds, averaging 38.8 rpg.
Illinois has also had six double-figure scoring games by players off the bench this season:
Player Opponent Points Calvin Brock Hawaii 11 Demetri McCamey Hawaii 10 Calvin Brock Duke 14 Trent Meacham Oklahoma State 17 Trent Meacham Weber State 26 Mike Tisdale Western Carolina 13Meacham Settles in at Shooting Guard
Junior Trent Meacham shared time at point guard and shooting guard last season, but with the addition of freshman Demetri McCamey to share point guard responsibilities with junior Chester Frazier, Coach Weber has Meacham focusing solely on the shooting guard position this season. The move has helped Meacham settle in and define his role on this year's squad.
Meacham did not play in Monday's win over Western Carolina because of an ankle injury. But over the last four games in which he has played, Meacham is averaging 17.0 points and is shooting 61.5 percent from the field (24-39) and 52.2 percent from 3-point range (12-23). He had a game-high 17 points vs. Oklahoma State, nine at Maryland, a career-high 26 points vs. Weber State and 16 vs. Arizona.
In addition to his increased scoring, Meacham is also taking care of the basketball, ranking second in the Big Ten with an assist-to-turnover ratio of 3.7 on the season (26 a/7 to).
Pruitt a Force Inside
Pruitt made 10-of-11 from the field against Arizona, which tied the sixth-best shooting performance in school history.
Pruitt has scored in double figures in each of the last two games, with 24 points vs. Arizona and 11 vs. Western Carolina. It is the first time he has reached double figures in back-to-back games since the first two games of the season, when he had 12 points vs. Northeastern and 15 at Hawaii.
Pruitt has 10 career double-doubles including one this season, when he pulled down a career-high 17 boards to go along with his 12 points vs. Northeastern in the opener. It marked the highest rebounding total by an Illini player in eight seasons, since Sergio McClain had 18 rebounds at Michigan on Jan. 16, 2000.
Pruitt also has 34 offensive rebounds on the year, leading the Big Ten with an average of 3.8 per game.
One of the most Illini's most durable players in recent years, Pruitt has started every game over the last two-and-a-half seasons and enters the Miami game with an active streak of 77 consecutive starts.
Randle More Aggressive on Offense
Randle returned to double figures for the first time in four games vs. Arizona, scoring 11 points. He also had a season-high five assists vs. the Wildcats. He just missed double figures vs. Western Carolina, finishing with nine points.
Randle is shooting 48 percent from the field (36-75) and in addition to ranking third on the Illini in scoring, he is also the team's third-leading rebounder with an average of 4.7 rebounds on the season.
Frazier Does It All
Despite standing 6-2, Frazier also is second on the team in rebounding behind Pruitt with an average of 6.0 rpg. He currently ranks 12th in the Big Ten in rebounding and is the only point guard listed in the ranking of the league's top 20 rebounders.
Frazier has twice grabbed a season-high nine rebounds, at Hawaii and vs. Duke, He also tallied eight boards vs. Oklahoma State, and seven at Maryland. He has been the UI's leading rebounder in four games this season.
Brock Named to Maui Invite All-Tourney Team
*For complete set of Illinois men's basketball game notes, click on .pdf link at top of this page.