Big Ten Tournament champion Illinois gets a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament

Shannon Ryan, Chicago Tribune
·1 min read

INDIANAPOLIS — The ladders came out quickly.

The brackets were waiting, after all.

Illinois snipped down the nets at Lucas Oil Stadium before the Illini hustled off to hear their name called as a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.

It was a historic Sunday for the Illini.

Illinois won the Big Ten Tournament championship for the first time since 2005 with a 91-88 overtime victory against Ohio State. That 2005 Illini team played in the national championship team — something this one aims to replicate except with a title.

Third-ranked Illinois has been on a tear and will take a seven-game winning streak into the NCAA Tournament.

The Illini (23-6) are the top seed in the Midwest Region and will play No. 16 seed Drexel (12-7) on Friday.

They would meet No. 8 Loyola or No. 9 Georgia Tech in the second round Sunday if they advance.