CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WMBD/WYZZ) — There are always big games on the Illini basketball schedule.
Illinois has big rivalries with Indiana and Iowa. They go toe-to-toe with nationally-ranked programs like Michigan State, Wisconsin and Ohio State.
But Wednesday’s game is the first time in 15 years Illinois will play in a game featuring top five teams. Fifth-ranked Illinois plays No. 2 Baylor in Indianapolis.
“These are games you dream of playing in,” said junior guard Ayo Dosunmu. “This is the main reason or one of the main reasons I decided to come back.”
Dosunmu and sophomore center Kofi Cockburn entered the NBA draft and then withdraw to return to school this summer. They are two of the reasons Illinois (3-0) has its highest national ranking since 2005.
“It’s a great challenge.,” head coach Brand Underwood said of the match-up with Baylor. “You want to find where you are at and you want to see what you can exposed by. Or what you can do against quality opponents.”
Illinois and (2-0) are scheduled for a 9 p.m. tip Wednesday.