Big Ten tournament notes
Send a link to a friend
[March 13, 2009]
begins play Friday evening in the 12th Big Ten tournament, hosted
for the fifth time by the city of Indianapolis and played at Conseco
Fieldhouse. Illinois has really enjoyed the tournament during its
initial 11-year run, posting a league-best 21 wins. As we prepare
for Illinois' quarterfinal game against Michigan at 5:40 p.m. on
Friday, let's look back on the 11-year history of the tournament and
specifically how Illinois has fared.
Over the past 11 years, two cities have hosted
the event. The city of Chicago hosted the first four tournaments,
from 1998 until 2001, and then, from 2002 through 2007, the cities
of Chicago and Indianapolis shared the tournament, each hosting
three times during that span. Two years ago, Indy was granted a
five-year contract, and 2009 marks the second year of this
Let's look at some factoids about the conference tournament and
specifically Illinois' performance over the past 11 years:
Illinois has won
at least two games at the tournament in seven of 11 years.
played in the title game in six of 11 years.
Illinois has won a
conference-best 21 games during the 11 years.
Illinois has won
two conference tournament titles (2003 and 2005). Iowa, Michigan
State, Ohio State and Wisconsin each own two conference
tournament titles. Michigan is the other team to win a
played every team in the conference at least three times in
tournament action with the exception of Iowa and Michigan. The
Illini have never played Iowa at the conference tourney and have
played Michigan just once.
Six of Illinois'
nine losses over the years have come to Michigan State and
placed nine different players on the all-tournament team over
Cory Bradford ('99)
Brian Cook ('00 and
Roger Powell ('03)
Dee Brown ('04)
Deron Williams ('04)
Luther Head ('05)
James Augustine ('05)
Demetri McCamey ('08)
Shaun Pruitt ('08)
Cook ('03) and
Augustine ('05) were named most outstanding player of the
placed three freshmen on the all-tournament team: Cory Bradford,
Brian Cook and Demetri McCamey.
Illinois went 15-5
in the seven conference tournaments played in Chicago and has a
6-4 record in the four tourneys in Indianapolis.
Illinois' history at the conference tournament
1999 -- The No. 11
seed, Illinois defeated three ranked teams -- Minnesota, Indiana
and Ohio State -- before losing in the championship game to
Michigan State. Both Ohio State and Michigan State would make
the Final Four in '99.
2000 -- The No. 4
seed, Illinois beat Indiana and Penn State before losing to
eventual national champion Michigan State in the title match.
2001 -- The No. 1
seed, Illinois beat Purdue before losing to Indiana in the
2002 -- The No. 3
seed, Illinois beat Minnesota before losing to Ohio State in the
2003 -- The No. 2
seed, Illinois beat Northwestern, Indiana and Ohio State and
captured their first conference tournament title.
2004 -- The No. 1
seed, Illinois beat Indiana and Michigan before losing to
Wisconsin in the title game.
[to top of second column]
2005 -- The No. 1
seed, Illinois beat Northwestern, Minnesota and Wisconsin and
won their second tourney title in three years.
2006 -- The No. 3
seed, Illinois lost on Friday night to No. 6 seed Michigan State
(whom Illinois had beaten in East Lansing just six days
2007 -- The No. 6
seed, Illinois beat Penn State and Indiana before losing to
Wisconsin on Saturday during the semis.
2008 -- The No. 10 seed, Illinois beat
Penn State, Purdue and Minnesota before losing to Wisconsin in
the title game.
Illinois' record against other Big Ten schools during the
Michigan State: 0-3
Ohio State: 2-1
Penn State: 3-0
Past Big Ten tournament champions
-- Michigan beats Purdue 76-67
-- Michigan State beats Illinois 67-50
-- Michigan State beats Illinois 76-61
-- Iowa beats Indiana 63-61
-- Ohio State beats Iowa 81-64
-- Illinois beats Ohio State 72-59
-- Wisconsin beats Illinois 70-53
-- Illinois beats Wisconsin 54-43
-- Iowa beats Ohio State 67-60
-- Ohio State beats Wisconsin 66-49
'08 -- Wisconsin
beats Illinois 61-48
First-round action on Thursday in the Big Ten tournament
No. 8 Minnesota 66,
No. 9 Northwestern 53
No. 7 Michigan 73,
No. 10 Iowa 45
No. 6 Penn State 66,
No. 11 Indiana 51
Friday quarterfinal action from Conseco Fieldhouse
(Morning and afternoon games televised on ESPN)
televised on the Big Ten Network)
And finally, happy 40th birthday today to the love of my life --
Marla! Have a great day -- you deserve it.
[By GREG TAYLOR]