2. I love to see efficient numbers for Ty Rodgers
This is a big year for many Illinois basketball players, but I would argue that it is the biggest year for Ty Rodgers. It is one of those seasons where you will tell what Rodgers is going to be at the college level.
Rodgers does nearly everything well on the basketball court. He had three assists, one block, and one steal in the game against Valencia. He can do a little bit of everything, and that is what Illinois needs.
But we also need someone who isn’t a liability on offense. Rodgers is still developing, but he wasn’t great offensively as a freshman, and there have been times I have worried about him during these exhibitions. That is why I am happy to see the numbers he put up against the Catalonia All-Stars.
Rodgers would have his usual box score-stuffing night with three assists, four rebounds, and a steal, but his offensive game seems to have been solid. He was 5-of-5 from the field and 3-of-4 from the free throw line.
Last season, Rodgers was a dreadful 38.7% from the charity stripe. It is extremely difficult to be that bad on free throws. But it looks like he may have practiced from the free throw line this offseason.
Through the last two games, Rodgers has now gone 6-of-8, 75%, from the free throw line. This is a massive improvement year-over-year, and in fact, he would be above the team average from last season, which was 68%. An improved Rodgers on the offensive end of the court is a dangerous Rodgers.