UI grade vs. No. 17 Ohio State: C

UI grade vs. No. 17 Ohio State: C

Player of the game: Lenzelle Smith Jr., Ohio State
Zion-Benton product showed his homestate school what it was missing. After struggling on three-pointers in Big Ten games, the senior hit 4 of 8 from beyond the arc and finished with 16 points. He also had five rebounds and three steals to help the Buckeyes quiet the naysayers.

Illinois C-, Ohio State B

In the category “least favorite college game,” this will certainly be at the top for Rayvonte Rice. He missed all eight shots and didn’t score. And picked up four fouls. The Illini need to relocate the guy who was at the top of the Big Ten in scoring earlier this season. Pronto.

Illinois C+, Ohio State B+

Nnanna Egwu regained his shooting touch, so that’s a positive step. LaQuinton Ross led the Buckeyes with 18 and helped the offense escape an early funk.

Illinois D, Ohio State D

Good thing the starters were scoring because the subs barely touched the stat sheet for either team. Maybe the problem is the shooting background. Or the rims. Or the court.  There was no bump from the backups.

Illinois C, Ohio State B

Joseph Bertrand played one of his better games of the season (game-high 19 points), but he didn’t get enough help and the Illini lost their fifth in a row. At least John Groce didn’t pick up another T. But panic among the masses has officially set in.

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Bwp 5P wrote on January 23, 2014 at 8:01 pm

UGLY....UGLY....UGLY game! I actually thought the Freshman ......other then being a tad bit overwhelmed at times.....played decent! Where is Ray at????

LateMoney wrote on January 23, 2014 at 9:01 pm

What is it with Groce's pattern of not allowing the freshmen to play in the second half?  Does he realize that they contributed to the team being up at the half?  Guard play continues to disappoint.  Too many unproductive possessions with no passing into the post or forcing the other team to really defend.  66 possessions, 15 turnovers, 55 points.  Awful display of offense.  I think this one could've been closer with better coaching.

griff507 wrote on January 23, 2014 at 9:01 pm

Never thought I would say this about ILLINI basketball, I can't wait for this sorry season to end. This team reminds me so much of some of Weber's teams that I want to throw things at the TV.

Terrible passing,terrible offense, terrible shot selection.

Like way to many ILLINI teams, we don't set good picks or screens, and we have not run a back door play all year.

I have stopped watching ILLINI football, now I will stop watching ILLINI basketball, at least for this year. My blood presure just gets way to high watching this group, I know why Groce is throwing his coat. He might just as well sit down and say nothing, nobody on this team is listening.

Nice game Joe and Nana, it is about time. Did Ray make the trip?