Actually, the ‘88 team could have easily gone to the Final Four. That team was just as good as the ‘89 team, they were about the same, actually.
Marcus jackson caught up with legendary Illinois coach Lou Henson this week:
What’s keeping you busy these days?
A lot. I get up early, I help Mary with house work and then I try to play a little bit of golf. I’m not a very good golfer and I’m trying to recover a little bit, but I’m out there fooling around. I go swimming every day and by the time I do exercises before and after, that’s about an hour and a half. I usually have lunch with somebody and then I usually play Bridge in the afternoon. I’ve been doing that all my life, but made a concerted effort to do it more the last few years.
You recently taped a special for BTN on the 1989 team. Do you ever get tired of talking about that season?
They’re talking to a lot of those players from the team, too. I never get tired of it, I always enjoy talking about them. That was a tremendous team. Actually, the ‘88 team could have easily gone to the Final Four and maybe could have won it because we were playing Villanova in the regionals and we had a 12-point lead with three minutes to go and my starters missed five one-and-ones and they had four three-point shots and would you believe a walk-on made the last one? That team was just as good as the ‘89 team, they were about the same, actually.
What are your impressions of the job John Groce has done since his arrival?
I watched his team play and I think he did an excellent job with that group. He’s working hard with the recruiting and he’s making progress. I know he’s taken some transfers and that’s probably good at this point. They’ve got some freshmen coming in, too. The recruiting looks good and I think things are on the upswing for him.