Projected Illinois basketball lineup after the commitment of Will Riley

It was a great day for the Illinois basketball program after Will Riley decided Champaign was his new home
Illinois v Michigan State
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Illinois basketball has received one of the biggest commitments in program history.

You can look back to 2003 on the 247Sports composite rankings and see that there isn't anyone ahead of newly minted Illini commit Will Riley. He is the highest-rated recruit in that 22-year span.

There have been other elite recruits to come to Champaign in the history of the program. Dee Brown and Nick Anderson are two of the biggest that come to mind. Riley is in that same air. That is how big of a commitment this is for the Orange and Blue.

With a new commitment, especially the magnitude of this one, there is a change to the roster. There are some adjustments that need to be made. This projected lineup is if Riley reclassifies to the class of 2024, which is likely at this point.

Here is the projected Illinois basketball lineup after the commitment of Will Riley

No. 1 Guard

Starter: Ty Rodgers (JR)

Illinois has landed Will Riley, who will take a starting job. But I don’t think that affects Ty Rodgers too much. I believe, heading into the 2024-25 campaign, he is still slated to start for the Illini. I have him taking the starting No. 1 guard spot.

Rodgers started in all 38 games for Illinois last season. He isn’t going to be relegated to the bench. As a sophomore, he averaged 6.2 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 2.0 assists per game. I believe Brad Underwood goes with more of a dual-point guard scenario. I fully expect both Rodgers and Kylan Boswell to bring the ball up the court. This is going to be positionless basketball.

Backup: Kasparas Jakucionis (FR)

Underwood and the Illinois coaching staff did some good work landing players from overseas in the class of 2024. An intriguing option for the Illini is Kasparas Jakucionis. He is listed as a shooting guard, but this kid can do it all on the court.

I have Jakucionis coming in and being the primary backup at the No. 1 guard spot. In the Addidas Next Generation Tournament, Jakucionis averaged 17.9 points, 9.0 assists, 6.3 rebounds, and 2.9 steals per game. Illinois will have a dangerous weapon with this kid coming off the bench behind Rodgers.