Illini to meet Dayton in secret scrimmage

Illini to meet Dayton in secret scrimmage

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The Illinois basketball schedule was completed last week when the Big Ten announced the conference slate for the 2014-15 season. But there's one more scheduling note involving the Illini that you won't see on any official schedule. Nor will you hear anything about it before, during or after.

In early November, at a yet-to-be determined location, the Illini will participate in a closed-door scrimmage with Dayton in preparation for the season, The News-Gazette has learned.

NCAA rules allow Division I programs to play two exhibition games prior to the official start of the season, provided those games are against programs from a lower division. The NCAA does allow Division I programs to scrimmage in a private setting against one another to take the place of an exhibition game.

According to the rules, the scrimmage cannot be included on the school's published season schedule and may not count against win-loss records. Only members of the athletic department staff and individuals necessary to conduct the scrimmage may be present. The schools must be sure that the scrimmage is free from public view and media are not in attendance.

Further, Illinois and Dayton coaches cannot speak about the details of the scrimmage or provide any statistics.

The purpose of opting for a secret scrimmage is to provide teams an opportunity to play early in the season against a quality Division I opponent where the result doesn't matter and wrinkles can be ironed out. Different rotation patterns and schematic tweaks an be made, too, all while getting a feel for your team's strengths and weaknesses against players of a similar ability level.

Archie Miller led the Flyers to the Elite Eight of last year's NCAA tournament where they lost to Florida with a trip to the Final Four on the line. The Flyers return t Jordan Sibert and Dyshawn Pierre, two of their top three scorers from last year's team.

The Dayton scrimmage will take the place of a second exhibition game. Illinois has Division II Quincy scheduled for Nov. 7 at State Farm Center. The season opener is Nov. 14 at home against Georgia Southern.

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battleship1500 wrote on August 25, 2014 at 4:08 pm

A double triple secret basketball game. Open only to almost no one -- man, the GOP would love this. Will the athletic department find a way to get around the rules and sneak in a few of its rich donors so that they finally have what they want -- their own private team? Maybe they could designate the rich folks who buy their way to get something named after them as temporary staff, thus allowing them to to attend without rubbing shoulders with the great unwashed. A shame this couldn't be held at the Champaign Country Club, right? Mitt Romney could be the ringmaster!

jdstieg wrote on August 25, 2014 at 4:08 pm

I guess it is not so secret if you are reporting about it taking place.

jjohnson wrote on August 25, 2014 at 6:08 pm

Since when is Elizabeth Warren using a secret name to post comments? That battleship doesn't float