Texas Rio Grande Valley (4-2) vs. No. 14 Illinois (3-2)
State Farm Center, Champaign, Illinois; Friday, 8 p.m. EST
BOTTOM LINE: No. 14 Illinois hosts Texas Rio Grande Valley in an early season matchup. Both teams won on Tuesday. Illinois earned a 72-64 win in Kansas City over Kansas State, while Texas Rio Grande Valley won 72-67 over Cal State Fullerton.
SENIOR STUDS: Texas Rio Grande Valley’s Ricky Nelson, Mike Adewunmi and Marek Nelson have combined to score 41 percent of the team’s points this season, including 55 percent of all Vaqueros scoring over the last five games.JUMPING FOR JUSTIN: Justin Johnson has connected on 46.2 percent of the 13 3-pointers he’s attempted and has gone 5 for 9 over his last three games. He’s also converted 67.7 percent of his foul shots this season.
PASSING FOR POINTS: The Illini have recently gotten buckets via assists more often than the Vaqueros. Illinois has an assist on 43 of 66 field goals (65.2 percent) across its past three games while Texas Rio Grande Valley has assists on 36 of 89 field goals (40.4 percent) during its past three games.
DID YOU KNOW: Illinois is ranked fifth among Division I teams with an offensive rebound percentage of 42.6 percent. The Fighting Illini have averaged 16.6 offensive boards per game.
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