Illinois opens basketball with annual scrimmage - Tri-State News, Weather & Sports

Illinois opens basketball with annual scrimmage

Illinois fans can get their first look at the 2013-14 edition of the Illini at Thursday's annual Orange and Blue Scrimmage. But don't expect a high-flying display. 

The Illini have just four players back from last season's 23-13 team. And coach John Groce says the team isn't ready to do much beyond the basics during the 7 p.m. scrimmage. 

Illinois will rely on returning point guard Tracy Abrams as well as the shooting of senior guard Joseph Bertrand. Center Nnanna Egwu is the only other player with any heavy game experience from last season. 

The Illini will also welcome guard Rayvonte Rice. He sat out last season after transferring from Drake. 

Illinois will open exhibition play Oct. 24 against McKendree University and start the season Nov. 8 against Alabama State.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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