Kofi Cockburn had 23 points and a career-high 18 rebounds to help the Illini (11-3, 4-0 Big Ten) end a four-game home losing streak to the Maryland Terrapins (8-6, 0-3 Big Ten) with a 76-64 comeback win on Thursday at State Farm Center.
Cockburn was the big time difference maker for the Illini, whether he was on the court or on the bench. Illinois was a plus-28 when Cockburn was on the floor and a minus-16 when Cockburn was on the bench — including Maryland 27-9 run to end the first half as Cockburn sat due to foul trouble.
The Illini, who this season have one of the best shooting teams in the country, struggled from the perimeter (8-for-30 from three), but Trent Frazier (16 points, 4-11 from three) and Alfonso Plummer (12 points) each scored in double digits, helping keep the offense flowing and taking some of the load off of Cockburn’s shoulders.
Maryland’s 27-9 run to end the first half was not a strong enough cushion to maintain the lead.
Next up on their schedule, following a few off days, Illinois will be travelling to Nebraska on Tuesday for a 7:30 p.m. CT tipoff (BTN) against the Cornhuskers.