Illini prepare for regular season finale against Buckeyes

Your Illini Nation

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — Ayo Dosunmu is still day-to-day with a concussion, said Brad Underwood in a press conference with media Friday.

It is unclear if the Illini’s best player will suit up at No. 7 Ohio State tomorrow afternoon, but Underwood said he went through an individual workout on Wednesday and then practiced with the team yesterday. He has missed the past three games against Northwestern, Wisconsin, and Michigan.

And whether Dosunmu plays or not, Giorgi Bezhanishvili will have a smile on his face. The junior smiled, sang, and danced in that same conference with media. Despite all the national attention the Illini are getting, Bezhanishvili says the team has not changed it’s focus.

“Our goal has been, is, and will be, to go win it all,” says Bezhanishvili. “It has been. We knew right away when the season started what kind of players we have, what kind of talent we have. Our potential is limitless, we want to go win it all.”

And after beating the Wolverines on Tuesday, Illinois certainly has shown it can do just that. The Illini are locked into the second seed in the the Big Ten Tournament. Their game with the Buckeyes is all that is left before the tourney in Indianapolis, they hope the trip will be an extended stay.

Getting a win in Columbus would all but guarantee a top seed in the NCAA Tournament. It will not be easy, Ohio State won in Champaign in January thanks to Illinois native EJ Lidell’s career-high 26 points.

“He’s a really talented kid, he’s gonna score 16 to 20 because of his talent and we just can’t give him the easy baskets,” says Underwood. “He made four 3’s in the first matchup against us and we’ve got to do a better job contesting that.”

It is a 3 p.m. tip between No. 7 Ohio State and No. 4 Illinois. It will be televised on ESPN.

For even more Illini coverage, watch the Your Illini Nation Pregame Show starting at 2 p.m. on WCIA’s digital channels. WCIA’s Bret Beherns will be in Ohio with Illini Inquirer’s Derek Piper, they will be joined by Andy Olson and former Illini Trent Meacham from the studio.

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