Growing up, I always believed that besides the Sears Tower, Assembly Hall’s spaceship-shaped silhouette is the most recognizable of any building in Illinois. And now, just like how the Sears Tower has become the Willis Tower, the Assembly Hall has a new name as well.
The University of Illinois’ home for basketball has a new name.
A long-discussed plan to renovate 50-year-old Assembly Hall at the University of Illinois should start next year and, while cutting seating capacity, include adding air conditioning and suites, Athletic Director Mike Thomas said Thursday.
In honor of Assembly Hall’s “Big Five-Oh,” here are the five most memorable Illini hoops moments that Dave Wischnowsky witnessed there in person.
If he’d gotten to Assembly Hall just a few minutes earlier, Illinois center Meyers Leonard would likely have been on time for the shoot-round before Friday’s season opener.
Caked in ice and covered by tundra that’s at least as frozen as anything you’ll find at Lambeau Field, there isn’t a whole lot that becomes ripe in Illinois during January.
They both played high school ball on a team with a more glamorous teammate (Bracey Wright and Evan Turner). Each entered college with a ton of talent – and probably a few too many pounds. But one worked his way into shape, led his team to the national championship game and became a first-round NBA pick.