Illinois has turned program around from low last March
Difference that a year makes
Illinois' biggest postseason event a season ago was an emotional goodbye news conference by Bruce Weber after he was fired.
Last season's pity party has been replaced by a March Gladness.
The Illini celebrated a return to the NCAA tournament Sunday, when they earned a No. 7 seed and a meeting with No. 10 Colorado in Austin, Texas, on Friday. A Round of 32 game in the East Region potentially would pit Illinois against No. 2 seed Miami.
"It gives us a little bit of an edge," senior Brandon Paul said of the Illini's past. "We're a lot better this year. The coaching change was against our powers, but we came in with the mindset whatever coaching staff came in we were going to be on the same page as them."
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