New Illinois basketball coach Brad Underwood addresses the media, while his family and Illini athletic staff look on.
Heather Winters for Illinois Public Media
March 20, 2017

New U Of I Basketball Coach Underwood: ‘I Dream Big.’

New University of Illinois men’s basketball coach Brad Underwood says he’s honored to be taking over a program in a city he’s visited many times before. The former Oklahoma State coach and 18th coach in Illini history met with reporters for the first time Monday in Champaign. Illinois Athletic Director Josh Whitman says the two of them hit it off instantly in their first face to face meeting Saturday.


Former Oklahoma State coach Brad Underwood reacts to a call against his team during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Iowa State, Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2017, in Ames, Iowa.
Charlie Neibergall/AP
March 18, 2017

Illinois Hires Oklahoma State’s Underwood As New Coach

Oklahoma State coach Brad Underwood is leaving Stillwater for Illinois after just one season, calling the chance to lead the Fighting Illini a "once in a lifetime opportunity." Underwood spent three successful seasons at Stephen F. Austin before signing on to coach Oklahoma State for 2016-17. "We were looking for a proven winner who would build upon our proud tradition while developing an unmistakable identity for Illinois basketball," Illinois athletic director Josh Whitman said in a statement. "Brad's teams play a fast, aggressive style and show unyielding toughness."


Leron Black and Malcolm Hill
Brian Moline/Illinois Public Media
March 14, 2017

Illini Men Run Past Crusaders 82-57

Interim Head Coach Jamall Walker picked up a victory in the Illini's NIT opener, 82-57 over Valparaiso at State Farm Center Tuesday night.  Malcolm Hill led the Illini with 25 points. Leron Black added a double-double with 13 points and 12 rebounds, as the Illini advance to the second round to face the winner of Boise State and Utah, who play later Tuesday evening.


Former Illini Women's Basketball head coach Matt Bollant addresses the media at the Ubben Basketball Complex.
Jeff Bossert/WILL
March 14, 2017

Illinois Fires Women’s Basketball Coach Bollant

Matt Bollant has been fired as head women's basketball coach at Illinois after five seasons, compliing a record of 61-94, and 22-62 in the Big Ten Conference. The news comes three days after John Groce was fired as men's head basketball coach.  "I am excited to embrace a future for Illinois Women's Basketball where we realize the program's full - and virtually unlimited - potential," said U of I Athletic Director Josh Whitman.


John Groce takes questions from the media at Memorial Stadium Saturday.
Steve Morck/Illinois Public Media
March 11, 2017

Illinois Fires Head Basketball Coach Groce

John Groce has been fired as head coach of the Illini basketball team, effective immediately.  "Under his leadership, regrettably, we were not able to sustain the level of competitive excellence that we expect at the University of Illinois," said Athletic Director Josh Whitman.


Curtis Lovelace looks over at the prosecutors during his first-degree murder trial Monday, March 6, 2017, at the Sangamon County Courthouse in Springfield.
Phil Carlson/The Quincy Herald-Whig via AP
March 10, 2017

Ex-prosecutor, U Of I Football Player, Not Guilty In Wife’s Death

A former assistant state's attorney and University of Illinois football captain Curtis Lovelace has been acquitted in his second murder trial for the Valentine's Day 2006 death of his first wife.  The jury delivered its verdict a little over two hours after closing arguments. Lovelace and members of his family burst into tears after the verdict was read.


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