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Robin Scholz/The News-Gazette Illinois guard Andres Feliz (10) in a NCAA basketball game at the State Farm Center in Champaign on Thursday, January 30, 2020.Robin Scholz/The News-Gazette Illinois guard Andres Feliz (10) in a NCAA basketball game at the State Farm Center in Champaign on Thursday, January 30, 2020.

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Fans will remember him because ...

Feliz might not have been the biggest name addition, but he wound up being crucial in Illinois’ rebuild the past two seasons. From knocking down floater after runner after leaner — all against bigger opponents in the lane — to diving for loose balls and rebounding as well as any guard, Feliz made his presence known on the court.

Best moment ...

Insert your favorite hustle play. There’s plenty to choose from. None probably epitomized Feliz as a player more, however, than when he ripped the ball out of the hands of 6-foot-10 Ryan Kriener and 6-foot-11 Luka Garza for an offensive rebound and putback at Iowa.

Brad Underwood says ...

“Dre does what Dre does. You look down at the stat sheet every night and you see how valuable he is from points to rebounds to assists. And the ability to make really hard plays.”

By the numbers ...

Feliz’s ability to finish at the rim made him stand out among guards in the Big Ten. It’s something he also did consistently in his two-year Illinois career, shooting 56.4 percent at the rim this season and 56.6 percent a year ago.

What’s next ...

It seems unlikely winter sports athletes will be granted an extra year of eligibility. It wasn’t all that clear if Feliz would have come back even given the chance. He’ll graduate in May with a bachelor’s in sociology and he’ll have been married a year come April, so it would have made just as much sense to pursue whatever the next stage of his life might be.

From beat writer Scott Richey ...

Speaking of marriage. Writing about how Feliz and his now wife Lisa Jo got married last spring without a word to his teammates or coaches — or their families — beforehand was one my favorite stories of the past couple seasons because it gave insight to Feliz beyond the basketball court. As a man — with much more responsibility in his life.

Scott Richey covers college basketball for The News-Gazette. His email is srichey@news-gazette.com, and you can follow him on Twitter (@srrichey).

College/Prep Sports Reporter

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