It appears that Illinois basketball has avoided the plague -- for now. On Saturday, Khalid Lewis returned to practice after 'serving' a five-day quarantine that resulted from a diagnosis of the mumps. The senior guard was forced to miss Wednesday's 78-68 loss to Michigan, which led to Jaylon Tate playing a career-high 34 minutes.
Despite averaging a mere 3.7 points and 3.2 assists, Lewis has recently taken over most of the point guard responsibilities for the Illini. According to KenPom, the La Salle transfer was receiving 53% of the total minutes at the position over the last five games (that figure includes the Michigan game). So this is really good news for an Illinois team that's been struggling to keep five guys on the court.
It's still unclear whether or not Lewis will be able to suit up for Illinois' game against Ohio State on Sunday, but this news seems to indicate that he's trending in a positive direction. John Groce is scheduled to speak to the media at 1:45pm this afternoon and odds are we'll find out more on the situation later today. We'll keep you updated.
Per John Groce, Lewis is feeling better, but he probably won't be available for the Ohio State game. Groce continued to say that the plan is to have the senior guard back for Thursday's contest against Michigan State.
#illini Groce: At this point, our plan is not to use Khalid Lewis tomorrow. Want him to get to full energy.— Jeremy Werner (@JWernerScout) January 2, 2016