Illinois Rankings for the Week of March 7

Photo: Matt Gentry/The Roanoke Times
Photo: Matt Gentry/The Roanoke Times

1. Northwestern (20-11, 8-10 Big Ten). Last week: 2

Northwestern defeated Penn State and Nebraska last week to secure a bye and the No. 9 seed in the Big Ten Tournament. The Wildcats will face Michigan in the second round this week.


2. Illinois State (18-14, 12-6  MVC). Last week: 1

After finishing the regular season with nine wins in its final 12 games, Illinois State laid an egg in the MVC Tournament quarterfinals against Indiana State.


3. Southern Illinois (22-10, 11-7 MVC). Last week: 3

Southern Illinois got bounced out of the MVC Tournament by Northern Iowa in the quarterfinals. It remains up in the air if the Salukis will play postseason basketball.


4. Northern Illinois (20-11, 9-9 MAC). Last week: 5

Northern Illinois ended the regular season with a victory to post a .500 or better record in the MAC for the first time since the 2005-06 season. The Huskies will host Western Michigan in the first round of the MAC Tournament on Monday.


5. Illinois (13-18, 5-13 Big Ten). Last week: 4

Illinois finished its regular season with a double-overtime loss to Penn State. The Illini will be the No. 12 seed in the Big Ten Tournament, taking on Minnesota in the first round.


6. Loyola (15-17, 7-11 MVC). Last week: 6

Loyola took Wichita State to the wire in the MVC quarterfinals but fell 66-58 after leading by seven points late in the second half.


7. DePaul (9-21, 3-15 Big East). Last week: 7

DePaul will limp into the Big East Tournament after losing to Villanova and Seton Hall last week. The Blue Demons will be the No. 9 seed, taking on eighth-seeded Georgetown.


8. Eastern Illinois (13-17, 9-7 OVC). Last week: 8

Eastern Illinois’ season ended with a loss to Murray State in the OVC Tournament. But at 9-7 in the OVC, the Panthers posted a winning conference record in consecutive seasons for the first time since 1999-00 and 2000-01.


9. Western Illinois (10-17, 3-13 Summit). Last week: 9

Western Illinois did not play last week after failing to qualify for the Summit League Tournament.


10. SIU-Edwardsville (6-22, 3-13 OVC). Last week: 10

SIU-Edwardsville did not play last week after failing to qualify for the OVC Tournament.


11. Bradley (5-27, 3-15 MVC). Last week: 11

Bradley fell shy of an upset against Loyola in the first round of the MVC Tournament, losing 74-66. The good news for the Braves is they no longer have the least efficient offense in Division I, per KenPom.


12. UIC (5-25, 3-15 Horizon). Last week: 12

UIC was a trendy upset pick in the first round of Horizon League Tournament, but the Flames could not repeat their regular season upset of Wright State. The 74-43 loss concluded their season.


13. Chicago State (4-27, 0-16 WAC). Last week: 13

After losing to UMKC last week, Chicago State enters the WAC Tournament with an 18-game losing streak.


Author: Jesse Kramer

Jesse Kramer is the founder of The Catch and Shoot. He's a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. He has had work featured on, College Insider, The Comeback/Awful Announcing, and 247Sports.

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