Fighting Illini Find Their Fight, Down Northwestern
Posted by sportsmaven on February 7, 2007
The Fighting Illini baseketball team came to Chicago tonight looking to start their run to what hopes to be an 8th straight NCAA tournament bid. They went home to Champaign tonight looking like a tournament team with a domant 58-43 win against the Northwestern Wildcats. The Illini were led by SR F Warren Carter with 17 points and C Shawn Pruitt with 15 rebounds. The Illini outrebounded the Wildcats 40-16.
The Illini are poised to make a strong run into the Big Ten Conference Tournament. They are 18-8 overall and 6-5 in the conference, which puts them in the top half in the conference standings. They are a half game behind Iowa and the top 3 teams above Iowa are all nationally ranked. The Illini have a rather weak schedule down the stretch, playing at #24 Indiana on Saturday. Their remaining 4 games are home against Northwestern and Michigan and on the road at Penn St. and Iowa. My guess is that the Illini will have to go 3-1 in their last 4 and then win two tournament games to advance to the NCAA tournament. Anything short of that puts them square in the running for the NIT.
(Photos courtesy of AP/ESPN)