Looks Like University Of Illinois – Jeremiah Tilmon

We needed a big man. We needed a recruiting win. We needed some momentum. Dammit, we needed something good to happen for once. And as I checked my phone on the 7th tee yesterday, huh, suddenly five texts from five different people. Wonder what might have happened. [Read more…]

Looks Like University Of Illinois – DaMonte Williams

Can I maybe please never go more than a year without handing out four Tom Cruises? The highest rating I gave out in this past football class was 3.5 Cruises. And I believe the last four basketball recruits received 1.5 (Lewis), 2.5 (Lucas), 2 (Nichols), and 2.5 (Pickett). If we want to climb back, we need to land 4+ Cruisers. Like DaMonte. [Read more…]

Looks Like University Of Illinois – Khalid Lewis

Not sure why, but this verbal reminded me of Dylan Ennis picking Oregon. Which might be an Illinois Basketball watershed moment. We obviously didn’t know it at the time (Tracy wasn’t injured – again – yet), but Ennis to Illinois could have been a game changer. Instead, the Villanova transfer picked Oregon back in May. And now, after Tracy’s injury, we’ve added Khalid Lewis. [Read more…]


What a difference a year makes.  Last year at this time I was writing about how the visits being set up in the fall in Champaign were unprecedented.  Multiple five-stars setting visits in Champaign. A year later and I’m not sure we’ll have even half of the visits we had last year.  And all of the prospects are fringe top-100.  Expectations = dumbed-down. [Read more…]


Have I mentioned how much I enjoy series’?  Have I mentioned how much I hate the burden of series’?  Right now I’m behind three 90i posts and three LLUOI posts.  Which usually means I’m frozen as a writer until I’m caught up. Today, with my first chance to write anything in 48 hours, I’m ignoring the series’ and writing about recruiting. For both sports. [Read more…]

Basketball Recruiting

I mean, if you want to talk about attention-grabbing headlines, this is it. This is the kind of stuff that might get me hired at the New York Times. “Robert, we need a headline for this new Kim Kardashian story.” “How about ‘Kardashian Story’, sir?” “BRILLIANT”.

This is a basketball recruiting post. I will now discuss basketball recruiting. [Read more…]


May is almost over.  Which means my yearly “I kinda take the month off from writing” month is almost over.  Typically, at the beginning of June, I’m writing about two things: current football recruits and summer basketball recruiting.  Today?  Today, with both, I’m impatient.  [Read more…]


It means nothing.  But it’s never happened before, so it means something.  But if nothing comes from it, it didn’t mean a thing.  Of course, if something comes from it, this is a wildly significant time period in Illini basketball history, because this has never happened before.  But it still might end up to be nothing.

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Fall Visits

Feels like 1991 up in here.  In those days, back when and you’d rush back to your dorm room after class to watch Saved By The Bell on TBS at 3:00 (just me?), you followed basketball recruiting through fall visits.  That’s when you knew a player was interested in your school, and when he verballed, you found out in the newspaper or on the evening news.  No, really, that’s what we did. [Read more…]

Bully Pulpit

It’s a dangerous thing. You make a statement on your blog, and then people respond that statement through email or Twitter, and then you have this ability to respond in public while they’re restricted to private conversation. Yes, they can maybe respond in the comments section, but really, a voice gives you the ability to set an agenda.  I try to avoid that, generally. [Read more…]