Illinois Basketball: Kofi Cockburn to miss start of Illini season – Writing Illini - Techy Hunters


Monday, November 1, 2021

Illinois Basketball: Kofi Cockburn to miss start of Illini season – Writing Illini

It looks like the Illinois basketball team will be without big man Kofi Cockburn for the start of the 2021-22 campaign.

On Monday, it was announced that Kofi will not play in the Jackson State game on November 9, the Arkansas State game on November 12, and the Marquette game on November 15 due to breaking NCAA rules.

The rule Kofi broke has to do with him selling his Illini gear on The Players Truck, according to Scott Richey of The News-Gazette. The Players Truck is a website, much like eBay, that allows players to sell their used equipment.

While this may not sound like an offense, due to the name, image, and likeness rules set forth by the NCAA, Kofi ended up selling his gear a month before the rules were put into place. So, now the preseason first-team All-American has to watch as the Illini try to stay undefeated in the three-game stretch.

What does Brad Underwood have to say about the Illinois basketball team missing Kofi?

Richey has the quote from Underwood in his article.

“We are disappointed with the three-game suspension, because there were unprecedented factors and altered timelines related to his decision to ultimately withdraw from the NBA Draft and return to school,” Illinois coach Brad Underwood said in a release. “Once Kofi had a full understanding of where he stood regarding the draft, he made an educated decision to return to school, work toward his degree, and continue improving his game. That said, we understand and respect the NCAA’s decision in this matter, and we will move forward accordingly.

Does this make a huge difference for the Illini in the first few games? Likely, no, at least for the Jackson State and Arkansas State games. I think Illinois can out-talent those programs. But we need Kofi against Marquette. That will be a tough test.

This is only a small bump in the road. Kofi will serve the three-game suspension and be back with the Orange and Blue before you know it.

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