Basketball season hit Chicago yesterday with a bang, generic with the Bulls taking down the Cavs with a two-point win and President Obama’s motorcade messing with traffic during rush hour to get down to the United Center.
But before the Bulls kicked things off at the UC in Chicago, the Illini tipped off earlier in the week at the other UC — the Ubben court in Champaign. The men’s basketball team hosted what they called the #IlliniALLIN team scrimmage in front of a small crowd on Sunday in their practice facility.
Check out this post-event video put together by the fine folks of Fighting Illini Athletics.
Those in attendance have been raving about a new face on the team, transfer graduate student Mike Thorne Jr., who joined the orange and blue is year from Charlotte. Take a look at the rave review from the News-Gazette.
Taking a look at the scrimmage’s box score, the numbers tell the story. Thorne had a team-high 15 points, tallied one assist and racked up some blocked shots.
Four more things to know about Thorne:
- He’s 6’11” and weighs 270
- He was Charlotte’s third leading scorer, averaging 10.1 points per game
- He led his team in rebounding, averaging a little over 7 rebounds per game
- He holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology and is enrolled at Illinois in master’s program in education policy, organization and leadership
We’ll all just have to wait and see if the hype on Thorne from an ultimately meaningless, Illini-on-Illini battle carries through when it’s the real thing, but it is nice to have a glimmer of hope for the season when it this injury-riddled Illinois squad.