CHAMPAIGN – One of the unique things about the 2020-2021 season for seniors is that it didn’t have to be their final seasons.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, players were allowed to play an extra year with their program even if they were in the last year of those eligibility. It left a choice for seniors across the country as they looked ahead to what many hope is a more normal season in 2021-2022.
You can count one of the key players on Illinois’ Big Ten Tournament championship team as one of those who will be back for another year.
On Saturday, guard Trent Frazier announced on Twitter that he was returning to Illinois for what will be his fifth season for the Illini. He’ll remain a major contributor to a team that will be looking replace All-American Ayo Dosunmu (NBA Draft declaration), Adam Miller (transfer portal), and Giorgi Bezhanishvili (pursuing professional opportunities).
Frazier, who saw significant playing time in his previous four seasons with Illinois, averaged 10.2 points and 2.7 assists in 31 starts for the Illini in 2020-2021 while also making 39 steals. He was named to the Big Ten’s All-Defensive team along with an All-Conference honorable mention.
On top of Frazier’s return, Illinois also got a commitment from former Utah guard Alfonso Plummer, who joins the Illini after two seasons with the Utes.
In 25 games the 2020-2021 season, including 16 starts, he averaged 13.6 points per game. His commitment comes after former Florida center Omar Payne joined the Illini from the transfer portal this week.