CHAMPAIGN (WCIA) — A 12-point win over Nebraska isn’t cause for concern but Illinois head coach Brad Underwood wanted more. Nine missed layups and seven missed shots in the paint will do that to a coach.
“We probably set an NCAA record for the amount of missed layups tonight and the opportunities at the front of the rim,” Underwood said. “You have those nights and we weren’t extremely sharp but it’s frustrating to shoot 39 percent because I know where we got our shots.”
The Illini (18-9, 10-6 B1G) scored five players in double-figures, led by Ayo Dosunmu’s 18 points. Kofi Cockburn’s program freshman record 11th double-double helped Illinois win the battle on the boards 48-35, but missing the bunnies was something that stuck in Underwood’s craw after the game.
“When we’re locked in we don’t miss those shots and when we’re not, we miss them,” he said.
Coming off a six-day layoff following its upset win at No. 9 Penn State, Illinois had to use a 6-0 run at the end of the first half to lead at the break. Trent Frazier capped the opening 20 minutes with a 73-foot shot to beat the buzzer. The junior launched it from the opposite free throw line and found the bottom of the net.
“I practice those shots every day so it was great to see it go in,” Frazier said. “Up to that point, I was probably 1-for-70 so…”
Illinois is back in action Thursday night visiting Northwestern for a 7 p.m. tipoff on Big Ten Network.