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We might have something special here

What is going on with women’s hoops?

Eight and a half months ago, the Illini Women’s basketball team was coachless after the retirement of Nancy Fahey. After nine seasons of finishing below .500 over two coaching tenures — and being the laughingstock of Big Ten women’s hoops — Illinois AD Josh Whitman knew the program needed some rebranding.

This wasn’t the first time Whitman had to make a hoops hire. Much like women’s basketball, his men’s team was once in the same boat, but the hire of Brad Underwood turned the Illini basketball program into a well-oiled machine. So, when looking at the potential candidates to turn the Women’s basketball program around, one name stood out from the rest: Shauna Green

At the time, Whitman had this to say about the former Dayton head coach.

“Even amongst such a talented candidate pool, Shauna Green quickly emerged as a dynamic, proven leader with a demonstrated record of success at one of the nation’s most visible, accomplished mid-major programs — she and I connected quickly around an ambitious vision for the future of Illinois women’s basketball, which she and her staff plan to spread around the state and across the country.”

Flash forward to now after a handful of games, and Coach Green has all of us believing and doing things #OneWay.

Illinois (7-1) vs Pittsburgh (5-3) — ACC/B1G Challenge

PITTSBURGH, Pa. — You have our attention.

Entering this game, Illinois was coming off a win against Charlotte and a close battle against Delaware that resulted in a 83-80 loss at the Daytona Beach Invitational. Illinois seemed to handle its own while in Florida, showing that it could hang with tournament caliber programs, something we haven’t seen in more than a decade.

Pittsburgh, on the other hand, dropped its previous two games, one to DePaul and the other to fellow Big Ten colleague No. 20 Maryland. Losing by a combined score 162-121. The Panthers knew that in order to stop Illinois, they had to limit the Illini’s opportunities on the offensive end.

After the whistle blew to start the contest, it did not take long for the Panthers to strike first blood with a Maliyah Johnson break-away layup. Over the rest of the quarter, however, Illinois responded in a big way with some massive runs including a 7-2 and a 11-2 run over a four-minute stretch that gave the Illini take an 11-point lead. Pittsburgh showed fight crawling back to end the quarter down by 5.

Behind Makira Cook and Adaila McKenzie the Illini would take the court by storm in the 2nd quarter. The Illini behind 73.3% team shooting would score a total of 32 points in the quarter, giving Illinois a 50-30 lead over Pittsburgh heading into the half.

With the Illini shooting as well as they were, with Kendall Bostic grabbing every rebound in her sight, the Panthers had no answers the Illinois in the 2nd half. Illinois couldn’t quite reach the century mark — but hey, 92 will do.

Final: Illinois 92 - Pittsburgh 71

Illini Top Performers:

  • Adalia McKenzie: 25 pts | 9-11 fg | 2-3 3pt | 5-7 ft
  • Makira Cook: 22 pts | 9 ast | 5 rebs
  • Kendall Bostic: 6 pts | 2 ast | 14 rebs
  • Jada Peebles: 20 pts | 7-8 fg | 6-7 3pt
  • Genesis Bryant: 17 pts | 4 asts | 4-5 3pt

Illinois (7-2, 0-1 B1G) vs No. 5 Indiana (9-0, 1-0 B1G)

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Let Cook... cook.

Shauna Green and Co. almost did what many thought they would never see... an Illini women’s basketball team beat a top 5 ranked opponent — on the ROAD.

There is something here that we haven't seen since 1996-98, when the Illini reached the Sweet 16 consecutive years. Now, we can’t get ahead of ourselves. It’s still early and anything can happen, but the Illini are turning heads and women’s college basketball is taking notice.

Final: Illinois 61 - #5 Indiana 65

Illini Top Performers:

  • Makira Cook: 33 pts | 5 rebs | 12-25 fg | 3-4 3pt | 6-6 ft | 39 min
  • Adalia McKenzie: 9 pts | 11 rebs | 2 stl | 35 min
  • Kendall Bostic: 8 pts | 14 rebs | 4-5 fg | 35 min


Illinois’ Big Ten home opener is this Wednesday against the newly-led Rutgers Scarlet Knights.

Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. Wednesday on BTN+.

On Sunday, the Illini will get away from Big Ten play as they head to the Hinkle Fieldhouse in Indianapolis to facing off against the ever so dangerous Butler Bulldogs.

Tipoff is set for 12 p.m. CT. Sunday. Listen on 1400AM & 93.9FM.

Rest of the Big Ten


  1. #5 Indiana (9-0 Overall, 1-0 Big Ten)
  2. #17 Michigan (9-0 Overall, 1-0 Big Ten)
  3. #4 Ohio State (8-0 Overall, 1-0 Big Ten)
  4. #10 Iowa (6-3 Overall, 1-0 Big Ten)
  5. Nebraska (6-3 Overall, 1-0 Big Ten)
  6. Minnesota (5-3 Overall, 1-0 Big Ten)
  7. Purdue (7-1 Overall, 0-0 Big Ten)
  8. Michigan State (6-3 Overall, 0-0 Big Ten)
  9. Illinois (7-2 Overall, 0-1 Big Ten)
  10. Penn State (7-2 Overall, 0-1 Big Ten)
  11. #20 Maryland (7-3 Overall, 0-1 Big Ten)
  12. Northwestern (4-4 Overall, 0-1 Big Ten)
  13. Rutgers (4-6 Overall, 0-1 Big Ten)
  14. Wisconsin (3-7 Overall, 0-1 Big Ten)