Recruiting

Recruiting

Sunday Conversation: Nancy Fahey

Nancy Fahey is still settling into her role as the Illinois women's basketball coach after getting hired on March 22. But she took some time to catch up with sports editor Matt Daniels to talk about getting to know her current team, looking for a house in town and her time throwing out a first pitch before a St. Louis Cardinals game.

Illini extend offer to N.J. wing

WESTFIELD, Ind. — Illinois’ recruiting reach extended to the East Coast again Saturday with an offer to New Jersey wing Justin Minaya. The 6-foot-6, 195-pound Minaya is currently a Class of 2017 prospect, but per SportsNet New York’s Adam Zagoria, who also reported the Illini offer, the Harrington Park, N.J., native is considering taking a year at a prep school and reclassifying to 2018.

UI hoops target Hall: 'Have to step up my game'

WESTFIELD, Ind. — Malik Hall's decision to transfer from Metea Valley to Sunrise Christian Academy in Bel Aire, Kan., after his freshman season wasn't one he came to easily.

Hall admits it was a difficult choice to make. But it was a decision in which the potential benefits outweighed moving away from friends and family in the Chicago suburbs.

College basketball extra: Smith staying home to 'represent'

Every other Sunday in the offseason, college basketball writer Scott Richey provides a page of news and analysis. Want more? Richey chats at 12:30 p.m. Wednesday at IlliniHQ.com.

FROM THE BEAT WRITER'S DESK

State’s Mr. Basketball feeling comfortable with pick, thanks to help from ex-Illini Hill, others

Tate: Size may not be major worry for Illinois

Brad Underwood's strike in Edwardsville hopefully terminated Illinois' reputation as a runner-up finisher in high-level basketball recruiting.

Mark Smith has added quality and depth to the Illini backcourt, and a sense of relief within the fandom. But how does that compute in the Big Ten basketball standings?

Central's Finke working through slump with Meanstreets

WESTFIELD, Ind. — Meanstreets tipped off its spring schedule at NY2LA Swish N' Dish in Milwaukee. That opening weekend of the spring AAU season, from March 31 to April 2, went just OK for Meanstreets given the team had two practices together beforehand.

PODCAST: Saturday SportsTalk 04-29-17

PODCAST: Saturday SportsTalk 04-29-17: Play now!

Michael Kiser and Loren Tate host the Saturday edition of Sports Talk. They talk with Brad Sturdy. 

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LIVE! Indy's EYBL

College basketball beat writer Scott Richey is in Indianapolis for this weekend's EYBL event that includes a host of Illini targets.

Among the games — and players — Richey plans to keep an eye on:

SATURDAY

8:30 a.m. — Meanstreets vs. Renaissance (Tim Finke)

Underwood: 'We've got to be the option' for in-state athletes

CHAMPAIGN — Brad Underwood's first signed prospect as Illinois' coach hits a lot of checkmarks.

Edwardsville guard Mark Smith is:

— Illinois' Mr. Basketball winner;

— A four-star recruit and one of the fastest-rising prospects in the 2017 class;

Underwood: 'He makes his teammates better'

Illinois coach Brad Underwood discusses signing Class of 2017 four-star prospect Mark Smith. The 6-foot-5 guard out of Edwardsville was the Illinois Mr. Basketball winner and 2017 News-Gazette All-State Player of the Year.