What is an Illini? Explaining history of Illinois basketball nickname

Watch the NCAA Tournament and you will come across some interesting team nicknames, some of which will cause curiosity about their origin.

Teams such as the Illinois Fighting Illini, for example.

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Brad Underwood’s Fighting Illini (26-8, 14-6 in Big Ten play) are slated as the No. 3 seed in the East Region of the NCAA Tournament. They will take on No. 14 seed Morehead State in the first round of March Madness.

Though Illinois has appeared in four straight NCAA Tournaments under coach Underwood, the Illini have yet to make it past the first weekend. Illinois lost to Arkansas 73-63 in the first round last year. But more to the point:

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First appeared on www.pjstar.com

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