Projected 2024-25 lineup for the Illinois basketball team

The women's Illinois basketball team has a load of talent returning in 2024-25, and now we are throwing a five-star freshman into the mix.
Illinois v Villanova
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The women's Illinois basketball season came to an end with a triumphant victory.

Despite the Illini not making the NCAA tournament, this program never held its head down. Illinois clinched a spot in the WBIT and dominated. We trucked through the competition en route to a WBIT title just days ago.

That win potentially marked the end of an era. I thought most of the starting lineup was going to depart. That didn't happen, though. Illinois has multiple players coming back for a fifth year. This team is now poised to do some special things in 2024-25.

Here is the projected 2024-25 lineup for the Illinois basketball team

No. 1 Guard

Starter: Makira Cook (5YR)

Illinois basketball doesn’t have to reload for next season, as there are some important pieces running it back, as the kids would say. Back on March 20, the women’s Illinois basketball social media account announced that Makira Cook was coming back for her fifth year. This announcement was huge for the program.

Cook was one of the leaders on the team the last two seasons. She averaged 16.4 points, 4.4 assists, 3.1 rebounds, and 1.0 steals per game in 2023-24. Cook’s shooting numbers were solid too, hitting 40.0% from the field, 35.4% from three-point range, and 85.4% from the free throw line. I have Cook, obviously, starting at the No. 1 guard spot next season. She will likely be leading an Illinois team that starts the season ranked inside the top 25.

Backup: Kam’Ren Rhodes (JR)

There isn’t a ton of depth at guard for Illinois entering next season. I have Kam’Ren Rhodes as the primary backup at the No. 1 guard spot.

Rhodes played in 23 games and averaged 1.1 points, 0.8 rebounds, and 0.7 assists in 7.8 minutes per contest. That is not a ton of experience, so there needs to be some depth added at this position.

Backup: Transfer Portal (Scholarship #1)

With two projected scholarships available, I think it would be a good idea if Shauna Green went out and got a solid backup point guard for the Illini. The backup needs to be someone who can spell minutes or isn’t going to be too big of a drop-off if Cook misses a few games.