CHAMPAIGN (WCIA) — The Illinois basketball season officially tips off in 41 days when Nicholls St. visits State Farm Center but the preseason awards are already rolling in for Ayo Dosunmu. The sophomore guard was named a third team preseason All-American on Wednesday by Athlon Sports. In addition, Blue Ribbon tabbed the Chicago native as a first team All-Big Ten selection in its preseason release.
Dosunmu is coming off a historic freshman season, becoming the first true freshman to lead the team in scoring with 13.8 points per game. He was named to the Big Ten All-Freshman team as well as an honorable mention all conference pick by both the coaches and media.
Official practices are underway for most teams across the country but the Illini are taking it slow. The team had 10 full practices this summer to get ready for its trip to Italy. The players are still working out, doing skill small group skill work before things get rolling more next week. Third-year head coach Brad Underwood isn’t rushing it.
“It’s the start of really our March towards what we hope is a long run in the month of March,” Underwood said. “But we’re excited and a lot of teaching going on and that’s always encouraging.”
Illinois is coming off a 12-21 season, the most losses in a season in school history.