Dosunmu on track to finish among Illini's best freshmen


Listen to this article

If the season ended today, Ayo Dosunmu would finish with the fourth-best scoring average for an Illini freshman in program history. The Chicago native — who is averaging 14.2 points — is chasing these three individuals ahead of Sunday's noon tip at Iowa:

Kiwane Garris

The Chicago native set the standard that all Illini freshmen since have strived to meet when it comes to scoring production. The Westinghouse product averaged 15.9 points per game during the 1993-94 season that ended with a first-round NCAA tournament loss to Georgetown. Garris didn't stop scoring the rest of his Illini career, either. His 1,948 career points are second all-time in program history.

Cory Bradford

He entered the starting lineup against Wake Forest at Madison Square Garden on Nov. 10, 1998 and never left during the next four seasons. The all-time leader at Illinois in three-pointers made (327) and consecutive starts (134), Bradford let Illini fans know early on he would be fun to watch. The Memphis, Tenn., native averaged 15.4 points as a freshman and wound up with 1,735 career points.

Deon Thomas

After having to sit out the 1989-90 season after an NCAA investigation into his recruitment, the Chicago Simeon product didn't let that slow him down. At all. Once he set foot on the court during the 1990-91 season, Thomas went on to average 15.1 points per game. Thomas finished his four-year career with a still-standing Illini record of 2,129 points. While making all of one career three-pointer.

College/Prep Sports Reporter

Scott Richey is a reporter covering college basketball at The News-Gazette. His email is, and you can follow him on Twitter (@srrichey).