Should we buy the Illini?

Words of caution for Illinois fans, but Pitt appears to be vastly underrated

Updated: December 11, 2012, 1:59 PM ET
By John Gasaway | Basketball Prospectus
PaulRobert Johnson/Icon SMIHave Brandon Paul and Illinois turned a corner? Only if they can keep shooting the 3 this well.

Late on the evening of March 8, 2012, Ohio took the floor at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland to play Toledo. At the time there wasn't an abundance of attention being paid to a MAC quarterfinal between a No. 3 seed and a No. 7 seed that tipped at 9:55 p.m., but it actually marked the beginning of a rather remarkable run.

Starting with the opening tip of that game, teams playing for John Groce -- which is to say Ohio in the 2011-12 postseason, and Illinois so far this season -- have devoted 43 percent of their shot attempts to 3-pointers, and have connected on those attempts 40.5 percent of the time. Groce's record over that stretch stands at 15-1, and he has yet to lose a game in regulation. (Ohio, you may remember, lost in overtime to North Carolina in the Sweet 16.)