Brian Carlwell Shows Big Time Promise

Illini recruit Brian Carlwell sat there on the bench after the game against maybe one of the best high school basketball players of all time - Lawrence North's Greg Oden. Carlwell didn't put up the numbers that Oden did, but the fight was something to be spoken for.

Call it orange Kool-Aid or whatever, but Illinois recruit Brian Carlwell played one hell of a game last weekend against Greg Oden. Sure, we all saw that Carlwell only scored 11 points with eight rebounds.

Think about this for a second here, Oden right now today could come into the NBA and start for about 20 teams. That's how good and strong this giant is (scary for Big Ten fans, but great for Ohio State). Oden has been playing basketball all his life, but the "other" giant that signed to play for Weber is still a pup. "I've only been playing basketball since my freshman year, so I think my best basketball is still ahead of me. I just have to work really hard to get better; I have to improve each game and every year I'm out there. I don't want this to happen to me again the next time I get to play him," Carlwell said.

Carlwell looked to be very excited to play the game, but maybe a little too excited. "It didn't bother me at all that Coach Weber was here. He's seen me play before; that didn't bother me at all. I did see all the Illinois fans here and I did want to play good for them. But for the most part I just love to play the game and it's a game that I love."

Carlwell, to a fault, was being too nice on the court. At times he never really got the ball in scoring position and his team will learn that in time, I hope. But from an athletic standpoint, the sky's the limit for him. Don't worry about the national rankings because's Dave Telep came away very impressed with Carlwell's play and will probably move him up when his next rankings come out. "I think he did fine, Kedric. This kid has a lot of upside to his game; he'll be fine," said Telep.

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