Welcome to “Good Morning, Illini Nation,” your daily dose of college basketball news from Illini beat writer and AP Top 25 voter Scott Richey. He’ll offer up insights every morning on Brad Underwood’s team:
A clear sign you might be more than ready for college basketball season? You spent a not insignificant amount of time watching — and rewatching — the 40-second video Illinois tweeted this week.
The good news for those more basketball inclined? The season is literally right around the corner. Practice at the end of this month. Exhibitions in October. Then November through April(?) for the season itself.
But about that video. Here's a few things you might have noticed ...
— Da'Monte Williams, with his 7-foot wingspan, is still a problem defensively (even for his teammates in practice).
— The rims at Ubben Basketball Complex have yet to yield to the overwhelming force of a Kofi Cockburn dunk (or three), but it's probably a close thing.
— Speaking of dunks ... several Illini can play above the rim. Remember when nobody on this team dunked?
— Coleman Hawkins has a smooth looking fadeaway jumper from the mid-post.
— Andre Curbelo getting to the basket whenever he wants and finishing with scoop layups? Still a thing.
— Alfonso Plummer has a super quick trigger pull from three-point range.