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Illinois earns No. 1 seed in 2021 NCAA Tournament

It’s win or go home from here on out.

NCAA Basketball: Big Ten Conference Tournament-Illinois vs Iowa Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

For the first time since 2013, the Illini heard their name announced on Selection Sunday.

Illinois drew the No. 1 seed in the midwest region, the first time since 2005 that the team enters the tournament as one of the top four teams in the nation.

The Illini drew 16-seed Drexel for their first round matchup which will take place on Friday.

2-, 3- and 4-seeds in Illinois’ region include Houston, West Virginia and Oklahoma State, respectively.

Intriguing early round matchups feature No. 8 Loyola in the Round of 32.

Hot off their first Big Ten Tournament Championship since (you guessed it) 2005, the Illini head into the big dance winners of 14 of their last 15. Five of the team’s last six wins have come against ranked teams.

The other No. 1 seeds in the 2021 Tournament include top-ranked Gonzaga, Baylor and Big Ten rival Michigan.

The Champaign Room will have wall-to-wall coverage of the NCAA Tournament over the coming days and weeks.