Da’Monte Williams returning to Illinois for fifth season


CHAMPAIGN (WCIA) — Da’Monte Williams is coming back to Illinois for a fifth season. The Peoria native announced his decision to use an additional year of eligibility on his Instagram page on Wednesday, thanks to a blanket waiver from the NCAA due to COVID-19.

Williams is one of three super-seniors who will play for the Illini next season, joining Trent Frazier and Alfonso Plummer, who transferred from Utah. Williams played in all 31 games for Illinois last season, starting 17. He led the nation in 3-point percentage among players with at least 2 attempts per game at 54.7 percent. For the season, Williams averaged 5.5 points and ranked third on team in rebounding at 5.3 per game.

Williams will bring experience to a lineup that’s losing Ayo Dosunmu, Giorgi Bezhanishvili, Adam Miller and potentially Kofi Cockburn. Williams has played in 126 games in his career, and his coming off a career year where he played a key piece off the bench for the Illini late in the season. It helped Illinois to a 24-7 record, winning 16 Big Ten games and the conference tournament. The Illini were a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2005 before losing to Loyola in the second round.

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