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Illinois holds off West Chester in final tuneup

It wasn’t pretty, but the Illinois men’s basketball team held on to beat West Chester, 75-66, in its exhibition finale Sunday at Assembly Hall. Tracy Abrams scored 17 points to pace four Illini in double figures. Twenty-one Illinois turnovers allowed West Chester to keep the score closer than expected. Illinois opens the regular season at 8 p.m. ET Friday vs. Colgate.

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In the spotlight: B1G players who need to produce

The exhibition season already has tipped off for Big Ten men’s hoops teams. Before the games start to count, though, BTN.com’s Brent Yarina wanted to offer his Big Ten players in the spotlight. Whether the players have big shoes to fill, they’re considered the missing piece or they’re coming off down years, Yarina offers one guy for every Big Ten team. See the list in this post.

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Illinois downs Lewis, 79-47, in exhibition

]Illinois defeated Lewis, 79-47, in an exhibition game Saturday night at the Assembly Hall. The Illini jumped out to a 26-4 lead, draining six of their first eight 3-point attempts during the early spree. Illinois’ defense was equally as impressive early on, holding Lewis to 1-of-13 shooting. Eleven Illini entered the scoring column, with three in double figures: D.J. Richardson (12 points), Myke Henry (11) and Sam McLaurin (11).

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Video: Big Ten men's coaches speak with reporters

There were few new faces mixed in among the veteran Big Ten men’s basketball coaches at the 2012 Big Ten Basketball Media Day on Thursday. Each one held press conferences and we’ve posted the video for each session in this post. Don’t forget that all of our videos – including these ones – live in our robust and searchable BTN.com video gallery.

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Big Ten Media Day notebook: Dirk, Zeller & fashion

While at Big Ten Basketball Media Day on Thursday, I walked around the mammoth Hyatt Regency O’Hare in search of some nuggets for a Media Day Notebook.See what I came up with from the event that issued more than 300 credentials, a figure Big Ten officials said was “the most in recent memory.”

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