Illini Basketball Report Card: vs. UNLV, Dec. 8, 2018

Illini Basketball Report Card: vs. UNLV, Dec. 8, 2018

Player of the game

Illinois guard Andres Feliz

Trent Frazier was banged up. Ayo Dosunmu couldn't consistently find the bottom of the bucket. Giorgi Bezhanishvili struggled to find his scoring touch. Enter the junior Feliz, who recorded easily his best game in the orange and blue with 19 points, two rebounds, two assists and a steal, hitting 7 of 11 shots from the field and all four of his free throw tries.

Backcourt

Illinois: C+

UNLV: C

Neither Frazier nor Dosunmu had much success hanging on to the ball, with each posting four turnovers. But they and Aaron Jordan were far more offensively able than UNLV's Kris Clyburn and Noah Robotham, outscoring the duo 27-14.

Frontcourt

Illinois: C-

UNLV: A-

Kipper Nichols came out like a house of fire with a dunk and three-pointer, but those were the highlights in this department. Nichols and Bezhanishvili had their lunch eaten by Cheikh Mbacke Diong and Joel Ntambwe to the tune of 31 points and 20 rebounds.

Bench

Illinois: A

UNLV: C+

This group is why Illinois won the game. Samba Kane got the first call, after playing in just four of Illinois' first nine tilts, and produced eight points. Feliz did his thing, and Alan Griffin also was effective.

Overall

Illinois: B-

UNLV: C+

It's much better than a moral victory, but there's still a long way for coach Brad Underwood's program to go. The Illini could've salted this one away early. Marvin Menzies' Rebels have power, but not much shooting range.

-