Bruce Weber did not have the kind of year most Illinois fans were looking for, the Illini fished the regular season with a record of (13-18) as they entered the Big Ten tournament as the No. 10th- seed. But today the Illini live to play again thanks to the freshman class at Illinois. Demetri McCamey and Mike Davis.
"We had a game plan, and we went out playing hard and playing with intensity and let everything carry over for itself. We just made big plays. Coach said we needed a trigger – someone to step up and be special tonight. Fortunately, I was that player, but my teammates helped me out a lot too with their screening. The four freshmen, myself, Jeffrey [Jordan], Mike Tisdale, who played real well, and Brian Randle helped us down the stretch too," McCamey said.
The Illini point guard was big at key times all game long for Illinois, McCamey put his team on his back, he scored 26 points, he made 9 of 14 field goals and was perfect from three-point land going 6-6 on the night.
Mike Davis was the other freshman that played a key role in the game, who finished the night with 10 points on 5-7 shooting.
"Their team is all freshmen. They start, what, three or four freshmen. We just wanted to go out and match how they played and try to come out strong in the half, and end the first half on a run. They made a run and we made a run in the first half. At the end of the game we came out big and made plays, and shots fell our way," stated Davis.
Today Illinois will take on the Minnesota Golden Gophers in the Big Ten semifinals round, the winner will advance to the championship game on Sunday.