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REPORT: Illinois hosting Marquette in 2023 Gavitt Games

Shaka Smart is coming to town.

Michigan State v Marquette Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

Illinois will have a helluva challenge early on in the 2023-24 season.

According to Jon Rothstein, the Illini will host Marquette in the 2023 Gavitt Games between the Big Ten and the Big East.

Illinois played the Golden Eagles in Milwaukee two seasons ago — Marquette won the game 67-66 behind a Tyler Kolek game-winner.

Kolek, the Big East Player of the Year, will be back this fall for Shaka Smart’s team, which is coming off a Big East title and No. 2 seed in the NCAA Tournament. Marquette fell short of expectations, falling to Michigan State in the Round of 32.

Many experts — including ESPN — project Marquette to start the season as a top-5 team, so it could be a big chance for the Illini to pull off an upset and turn some heads, despite having a very new roster. Think the UCLA or Texas games last year, which paid dividends when it came to Selection Sunday.

Illinois leads the all-time series with Marquette, 9-6.

This could be the final Gavitt Games, with the contract running out after next season. Illinois was not included in the 2022 edition.


We’ll know Illinois’ non-conference schedule in its entirety later this summer, but here’s what we know so far.