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Illinois basketball to honor Lou Henson in December

Henson will be honored when Illinois and New Mexico State square up at the United Center

Lou Henson Illinois

Illinois will play New Mexico State at the United Center in Chicago on Saturday, Dec. 16 in the final stretch of non-conference play this season.

Former Illini and Aggie head coach Lou Henson will be honored at the game. Henson is the winningest coach in the history of both programs.

The Illini went 423-224 in Henson’s 21 seasons. Illinois won the 1984 Big Ten Championship and made the 1989 NCAA Final Four under his leadership.

Henson graduated from New Mexico State in 1955. He coached for 41 years and won 779 games, 16th all-time.

Henson was inducted into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame in 2015. The courts for Illinois and New Mexico State are both named after the 85-year-old Oklahoma native.

Illinois’ conference opponents were announced Monday. The non-conference schedule will be released in the coming weeks.

EDITOR’S NOTE: An earlier version of this story said Illinois and New Mexico would be playing at the United Center. The Illini will be playing New Mexico State on December 16. The version also said Henson graduated from New Mexico in 1955. He graduated from New Mexico State in 1955 after two years at Connors Junior College. The Champaign Room regrets these errors.