The Official #17 Tennessee vs. #20 Illinois Game Thread, 12:00 PM ET, CBS

#1

YankeeVol

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#1
#17 Tennessee Volunteers: 5-3 (0-0 SEC)
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vs.

#20 Illinois Fighting Illini: 7-1 (1-0 B1G)
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GAME 9 | TENNESSEE vs. ILLINOIS - Saturday, Dec. 9, 2023 | 12 p.m. ET | Knoxville, Tenn. | Food City Center (21,678)


Line: UT -6.5
O/U: 146

TV: CBS / Watch
Radio: Vol Network / Listen / Live Stats
Satellite Radio: SiriusXM: 138 & 190
Online: CBSSports.com

Illinois Game Notes

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#2
#2
THE MATCHUP
• All three games in the all-time series, which is returning after a 35-year hiatus, have been won by the home team. Tennessee claimed victories on 12/15/67 and 12/10/85, followed by an Illinois victory on 1/17/88.
• Illinois, picked fourth in the Big Ten after going 20-13 (11-9) and making the NCAA Tournament last year, enters on a five-game winning streak after a pair of Quad 1 victories.
• The Fighting Illini are led by fifth- year guard Terrence Shannon Jr.'s 21.6 ppg, a figure that ranks No. 13 nationally.
• Tennessee owns a 26-38 all-time record against current Big Ten programs, while Rick Barnes is 32- 33 against that group, including 4-6 with the Volunteers.
• Illinois is one of five current Big Ten teams Tennessee has an all-time winning record against, alongside Iowa (3-2), Maryland (3-2), Minnesota (1-0) and Rutgers (2-0). It is also one of three Barnes is over .500 against as a head coach, joining Iowa (4-1) and Nebraska (10-4).
 
#3
#3
NEWS & NOTES
• Tennessee is on a 24-game non- conference home winning streak, dating back to the 2020-21 season opener (11/8/20), with victories over schools such as Arizona, Cincinnati, Colorado and Kansas during that stretch.
• Tuesday's victory over George Mason gave Rick Barnes a win over a 198th different program in his head coaching career. The 197th team he beat, Texas, was also a school he was the coach at.
• The Volunteers will be in both the first and last CBS Saturday basketball broadcast of the 2023- 24 regular season.
• Including exhibitions, Tennessee has already played three Big Ten teams, all away from home, this year. The Volunteers won, 89-88, at then-fourth-ranked Michigan State on 10/29/23 in an exhibition contest. On 11/10/23, UT began regular season road play with an 80-70 triumph at Wisconsin, its first-ever regular season true road win over a Big Ten team. Most recently, the Vols fell, 71-67, to then-second-ranked Purdue in the Maui Invitational semifinals.
• This is the fourth time in program history Tennessee is playing four AP-ranked teams in a five-game span. Most recently, in Jan. 2012, it faced #13 Florida (home win), #20 Mississppi State (road loss), #2 Kentucky (home loss) and #13 Connecticut (home win) in a five- game stretch. In Jan./Feb. 2004, the Vols had seven such foes in a nine-game span and went 2-5 in those outings. The other occassion was Feb./March 2002 to close the regular season and UT went 1-3 in those affairs. This is the first time the Vols are doing so exclusively in non-conference play and their first time doing so while ranked as well. It is also UT's third time doing so with all four foes in the AP top 20 (2012 and 2002).
• Illinois will be the fifth current KenPom top-15 team Tennessee plays this season, including the first at home. The Volunteers have already met #2 Purdue (N), #11 Wisconsin (A), #12 Kansas (N), and #15 North Carolina (A), posting a 1-3 record.
 
#4
#4
HAPPY AT HOME
• Food City Center has proven to be one of the most difficult venues for opposing teams to win at in recent years. Over the last four seasons, since 2020- 21, the Vols are 46-5 (.902) at home.
• Fifth-year guard Josiah-Jordan James owns a 57-11 (.838) mark at Food City Center during his career. Over half of those home setbacks (six) came during his freshman year in 2019-20. Fellow fifth-year guard Santiago Vescovi is 51-9 (.850) at home since his first appearance on 1/4/20, following his midyear enrollmenmt. Four of his nine losses came during his freshman season in 2019-20.
• During eight seasons under head coach Rick Barnes, the Vols are 111-22 (.835) at Food City Center. Twice during the Barnes era, UT has gone undefeated at home: 18-0 in 2018-19 and 16-0 in 2021-22.
 
#8
#8
NEWS & NOTES
• Tennessee is on a 24-game non- conference home winning streak, dating back to the 2020-21 season opener (11/8/20), with victories over schools such as Arizona, Cincinnati, Colorado and Kansas during that stretch.
• Tuesday's victory over George Mason gave Rick Barnes a win over a 198th different program in his head coaching career. The 197th team he beat, Texas, was also a school he was the coach at.
• The Volunteers will be in both the first and last CBS Saturday basketball broadcast of the 2023- 24 regular season.
• Including exhibitions, Tennessee has already played three Big Ten teams, all away from home, this year. The Volunteers won, 89-88, at then-fourth-ranked Michigan State on 10/29/23 in an exhibition contest. On 11/10/23, UT began regular season road play with an 80-70 triumph at Wisconsin, its first-ever regular season true road win over a Big Ten team. Most recently, the Vols fell, 71-67, to then-second-ranked Purdue in the Maui Invitational semifinals.
• This is the fourth time in program history Tennessee is playing four AP-ranked teams in a five-game span. Most recently, in Jan. 2012, it faced #13 Florida (home win), #20 Mississppi State (road loss), #2 Kentucky (home loss) and #13 Connecticut (home win) in a five- game stretch. In Jan./Feb. 2004, the Vols had seven such foes in a nine-game span and went 2-5 in those outings. The other occassion was Feb./March 2002 to close the regular season and UT went 1-3 in those affairs. This is the first time the Vols are doing so exclusively in non-conference play and their first time doing so while ranked as well. It is also UT's third time doing so with all four foes in the AP top 20 (2012 and 2002).
• Illinois will be the fifth current KenPom top-15 team Tennessee plays this season, including the first at home. The Volunteers have already met #2 Purdue (N), #11 Wisconsin (A), #12 Kansas (N), and #15 North Carolina (A), posting a 1-3 record.

Very good thread and the only thing missing is Tennessee's record when playing on CBS.
 
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#13
#13
Hopefully we can finally get a free throw advantage playing at home. Other top teams have seemed to have the free throw advantage when beating us.

I'm also highly intrigued about how we will defend Terrance Shannon Jr. Dude is a monster and playing at an unreal level. He will get his, but hopefully we can at least prevent him from being as efficient as he has been. Make everything inside difficult with the help defense. And stick on him like glue everywhere else.
 
#16
#16
They max out at 6'9, tho. Really, the only bad match-up is ZZZ and the 🦒could get back to back career highs, imo
That 6’9” guy is an earthmover at 270 pounds. His per 40 numbers are pretty impressive. Lots of interesting matchups in this game that could swing the game one way or the other.
 
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#17
#17
Hopefully we can finally get a free throw advantage playing at home. Other top teams have seemed to have the free throw advantage when beating us.

I'm also highly intrigued about how we will defend Terrance Shannon Jr. Dude is a monster and playing at an unreal level. He will get his, but hopefully we can at least prevent him from being as efficient as he has been. Make everything inside difficult with the help defense. And stick on him like glue everywhere else.
It’s going to be imperative that we limit Shannon and Domask. A fifth-year senior and graduate student who both have some game. Also, the only two averaging in double figures for the Fighting Illini.
 
#19
#19
Thompson Bowling Arena has proven to be one of the most difficult venues… Food City hasn’t proven anything.
Sorry YankeeVol, but that just grates.
I think Food Stores should stick to Food, and just who do you think is paying for Food City's Name on the Bldg? Everyone that shops there......
 
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#21
#21
Illinois rebounds quite well, but they do have more turnovers than assists on the year. Need to defend like the devil today and rebound at a high level. Tennessee has to defend those drives to the basket. Illinois does that quite well.
 
#22
#22
I think Food Stores should stick to Food, and just who do you think is paying for Food City's Name on the Bldg? Everyone that shops there......

They’re going to spend their promotional budget somewhere. Might as well be local sports. Food City also sponsors NASCAR races in Bristol.
 
#24
#24
I'm more concerned about the start time. Can't believe a match up like this is a nooner.

This is the price of selling out to television. It's absurd. Networks own college football /basketball, essentially.

We played a game in Honolulu that started at 9:00 a.m. local time.
 
#25
#25
That 6’9” guy is an earthmover at 270 pounds. His per 40 numbers are pretty impressive. Lots of interesting matchups in this game that could swing the game one way or the other.

Good lord: skinny Aidoo against a 270 pounder? That sounds a major matchup problem.
 
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