Illini Need To Make Upset Of No. 1 IU Mean Even More

Friday’s column from CBS Chicago

(CBS) It was a win that only the heaviest orange Kool-Aid drinker could have possibly seen coming, but it’s a victory that will forever be viewed by every Illini fan as among the greatest in school history.

No matter what happens the rest of this basketball season.

But what needs to happen the rest of this basketball season is for Illinois to build upon its stunning 74-72 upset of No. 1 Indiana on Thursday night and make it mean even more.

Namely, by using the win as a springboard to an NCAA Tournament berth – and, in turn, truly launching John Groce’s Illini coaching career.

Now at 16-8 overall and 3-7 in the Big Ten, Illinois had lost six of its previous seven games before Tyler Griffey’s layup kissed the glass at the buzzer on Thursday, sending the Assembly Hall crowd into a fit of Champaignia. The afterglow of the epic win is sure to last until at least Sunday evening, when it’s up to the Illini players to keep it shining after a 5 p.m. tipoff at Minnesota.

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