ILLINOIS FIGHTING ILLINI BASKETBALL INFORMATION:
Location: Urbana-Champaign, Illinois
Stadium: State Farm Center
Conference: Big Ten Conference
Rivals: Indiana Hoosiers, Michigan Wolverines
Fighting Illini: The Chief
Notable Alumni: Kendall Gill, Deron Williams, Brian Cook
The Fighting Illini first began playing intercollegiate basketball in 1906. As of 2007, Illinois has a long list of accolades including one mythical national championship in 1915, 5 Final Four appearances, 2 Big Ten Tournament titles, and an incredible 17 regular season conference titles. Who can forget their 2005 NCAA Tournament run? After going an NCAA record 37-2 for the season, Illinois would play one of the most exciting games in the history of the tournament against Arizona. The Illini would have to come from a 15 point deficit with only 4 minutes left in the game to win by just one point.
The Fighting Illini have been a great team from the very start. The Whiz Kids - Andy Phillip, Gene Vance, Ken Manke and Jack Smiley - swept the Big Ten title by three games in 1942. In 1943, the team went 17-1, and Illinois was on the map as a basketball state. Though the team has never captured an NCAA championship, the Illini have made themselves true contenders every year, and are one of the msot consistent teams to have ever played college hoops.
The Illinois Fighting Illini play their home games at State Farm Center in Champaign, Illinois. State Farm Center was opened in 1963 and holds nearly 17,000 spectators. The dome is one of the most striking sports venues in America. At one point, State Farm Center was one of only two such edge-supported domes in the entire world. This venue gets loud and is one of the great venues in which to watch college basketball. Buy Illinois Fighting Illini basketball tickets today and don’t miss any of this Big Ten action!
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