Illinois basketball has the biggest game of the young season on Tuesday night, as we take on the Marquette Golden Eagles.
After the new AP Top 25 poll was released on Monday, the Illini sit at No. 23 in the country while Marquette also moved up the rankings. The Golden Eagles are now the No. 4 team in the nation and have aspirations of moving even higher with a top 25 win.
This is going to be a really tough game for the Orange and Blue. Defeating Marquette would be huge for the program and would give us a big victory when the NCAA tournament comes around.
There are a few huge questions I have for this game.
Here are five big questions for the Illinois basketball team against Marquette
1. Will Illinois continue to attack the basket?
For the past couple of years, the Illinois basketball team has tried to be a three-point shooting squad. This trend continued in the first game of the season against Eastern Illinois as well.
The Panthers hung tough for a while against the Illini in that game. One of the reasons they did keep up with us was due to our poor three-point shooting. Illinois chucked up 32 three-point attempts against Eastern Illinois and only made 10 of them.
Illinois also struggled against a better Oakland program just days ago. The Golden Grizzlies had us on the ropes, but the Illini managed to pull through. I think a big reason why Illinois won that game was due to us attacking the basket.
So, I want to see if the Illini continue the aggressive play. Are we going to get to the rim or are we going to settle for three-pointers?
Illinois only attempted 16 three-pointers against Oakland. That is right around where I want to be as a team. The more we go to the hoop, the better chance we have at putting points on the board.
I also believe Illinois is better suited for paint production. Terrence Shannon Jr. and Ty Rodgers are better at the rim than the perimeter. Quincy Guerrier and Coleman Hawkins are dangerous within 10 feet of the basket as well. Let’s attack the basket. I believe Illinois has a good shot to win if that happens.