Illinois Basketball: Top 5 Illini hopes and expectations for the New Year

Valparaiso v Illinois
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3. Niccolo Moretti to get healthy and develop

There have been some struggles at times this season because Illinois is out there on the court without a point guard. A good point guard brings the ball up the court and gets the team in their offense.

In the little we got to see of Niccolo Moretti, he had a lot of great point guard qualities. He is someone who could really help the Illini win games this season, and he is our future at the point guard position.

Moretti has been injured for the past month or so. Entering the New Year, I want to see Moretti get healthy and back on the court. Illinois is only going about seven players deep right now, so having a sparkplug player who has great handles coming off the bench would be invaluable.

I think the playing time Moretti receives now will only help Illinois in the future too. His development is huge for the program, and without Moretti on the court, he can’t develop nearly as fast.

I see Illinois rolling into the 2024-25 campaign with the full expectation that Moretti is going to be starting at the No. 1 guard spot. I mentioned his handles above, but his ability to get to the rim and finish is also pretty impressive. His game is mature for his age, and it will only continue to improve with the more minutes he plays.

Getting Moretti healthy and getting him to continue to develop is something I hope the New Year brings. As an Illinois fan, I am excited to see how this kid’s career plays out.