Cockburn's career night lifts No. 14 Illinois to 94-85 win
Kofi Cockburn scored a career-high 38 points to lead No. 14 Illinois to a hard-fought 94-85 win over Texas Rio Grande Valley on Friday night. Illinois (4-2) started slowly, trailing the Vaqueros by as many as 12 points in the first half. Timely buckets from Cockburn and Alfonso Plummer, a transfer guard from Utah, helped the Illini go on a 15-5 run to take a one-point lead at the half.news.yahoo.com
Ohio State's Liddell speaks out about social-media abuse
(AP Photo/Robert Franklin)COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio State star E.J. Liddell says he'll continue speaking out against social-media users who direct racist, abusive and threatening messages at him and other athletes. “I just wanted to use my voice a little bit,” Liddell said Wednesday in a video call with reporters. And that’s not OK.”AdLiddell said he hadn't considered dropping off social media because with all the pandemic-related restrictions on where players could go and who they could see, social media was their link to the outside world. “If you really think about it, this year social media is our social life,” he said.
The Latest: Appleby cleared to play for Florida
(AP Photo/Michael Conroy)The Latest on the second round of the NCAA Tournament (all times Eastern):___7:45 p.m.Florida guard Tyree Appleby has been cleared to play and was in the starting lineup for No. 1 seed in the second round for a third time, joining the 2000 team against Arizona and the 2017 squad against Villanova. Sister Jean Delores Schmidt gave an inspirational pregame prayer to her Loyola Chicago team before the eighth-seeded Ramblers met top-seeded Illinois in Sunday’s second round. UCLA and Abilene Christian face off Monday, assuring that at least one double-digit seed will reach the Sweet 16. This is the first time four teams seeded 13th or worse made it to the second round.
The Latest: 12th-seeded Oregon State upsets No. 5 Tennessee
(AP Photo/Paul Sancya)The Latest on the first round of the NCAA Tournament (all times Eastern):___6:50 p.m.Another first-round upset as 12th-seeded Oregon State defeated No. 9 seed Georgia Tech 71-60 on Friday to mark a triumphant return to the NCAA Tournament. Senior guard Bubba Parham, who is 5-10, got the start instead as Georgia Tech went with a guard-heavy look. AdIllinois will face eighth-seeded Loyola Chicago or ninth-seeded Georgia Tech in the second round of the Midwest Regional on Sunday. Ad___2:10 p.m.Players from several NCAA Tournament teams took a knee during the playing of the national anthem before their first-round games.
Gonzaga, Baylor dominate AP All-America teams
(AP Photo/Chuck Burton, File)Gonzaga and Baylor spent almost the entire season holding down the top two spots in the Top 25. Makes sense they'd hold down a bunch of spots on The Associated Press All-America teams. The Bulldogs' Corey Kispert and the Bears' Jared Butler led the way with first-team nods Tuesday from the national panel of 63 media members that vote each week in the AP Top 25 poll. Just like the first- and second-team All-Americans, their teams also will be playing in the NCAA Tournament this week. ___AP Basketball Writer John Marshall and AP Sports Writers Michael Marot and Stephen Hawkins contributed to this report.
No. 3 Illinois beats No. 9 Ohio State to take Big Ten title
As the Fighting Illini celebrated their first Big Ten Tournament title since 2005 with a 91-88 overtime victory over No. 9 Ohio State on Sunday, they quickly turned the focus to their No. Instead of withering in their fourth game in four days and being without forward Kyle Young for the second consecutive game, Ohio State (21-9) continually fought back. BIG PICTUREOhio State: They didn't win the title but the fifth-seeded Buckeyes overperformed expectations. ALL-TOURNEY TEAMAdDosunmu and Cockburn were joined on the all-tournament team by Washington and Liddell from Ohio State and Iowa’s Luka Garza, the league’s player of the year.
No. 3 Illinois gets past No. 5 Iowa, into Big Ten title game
(AP Photo/Michael Conroy)INDIANAPOLIS – Illinois center Kofi Cockburn learned some hard lessons dueling with Luka Garza as a freshman. The victory sends the Illini to the Big Ten Tournament championship game. They made themselves at home, cheering loudly each time Cockburn made a play, while booing the foul calls against Illinois. A 9-0 run midway through the first half gave Illinois a 22-14 lead that it never surrendered. BIG PICTUREIowa: The Hawkeyes won't go away quietly in the NCAA Tournament, as Illinois found out Saturday.
Intense No. 4 Illinois makes statement, drubs No. 2 Michigan
Michigan can still wrap that up with a win in either of its last two regular-season games — or if Illinois loses its last game this weekend. The Wolverines are scheduled to play three fewer games than Illinois, and the size of this blowout — without Dosunmu — will resonate. Illinois could certainly pass Michigan as well after this game, but the Illini still have four more losses than the Wolverines. Plus, both Michigan and Illinois have more tests to come before the next poll. Michigan: The Wolverines finish the regular season with a home-and-home series against rival Michigan State, starting Thursday night in Ann Arbor.
Illini win 74-69 as Wisconsin's Trice-led rally falls short
Not even an amazing outburst from Wisconsin’s D’Mitrik Trice could stop the Illini from completing the school's first regular-season sweep of the Badgers since 2005. Dosunmu missed a second straight game after breaking his nose Tuesday in an 81-72 loss at Michigan State. Trice and Wisconsin pushed Illinois right to the very end. Ad“One of their players came into the (Wisconsin) huddle, which was not supposed to happen,” Wisconsin coach Greg Gard said. Illinois never trailed, capitalizing on Wisconsin’s shooting woes.
Michigan St tops No. 5 Illinois 81-72, bolsters NCAA chances
Trent Frazier scored 22 points for Illinois, whose star players weren't as productive as usual against a suddenly stingy defense. Michigan State: Hall of Fame Coach Tom Izzo hasn't missed the NCAA Tournament since 1997. They shot 24% and were held to 26 points in the first half at Michigan State before shooting better and scoring more in the second half. POLL IMPLICATIONSThe Illini, who haven't won at Michigan State since 2015, will likely slip in the AP Top 25 after getting upset as a seven-point favorite. Michigan State: Hosts Ohio State on Thursday night.
Cockburn scores 33 as No. 13 Illinois routs Minnesota 92-65
13 Illinois past Minnesota 92-65 in the Big Ten opener for both teams Tuesday night. Freshman guard Adam Miller added 14 points, while Trent Frazier and Ayo Dosunmu each scored 10 for Illinois (5-2). Illinois went on several runs, including a 22-5 spurt fueled by back-to-back 3s from Frazier to end the half. Illinois has struggled with turnovers this season and committed 14 against Minnesota. The outcome was never in question in the second half and Illinois used its defense and quickness to put away the Gophers.