Illinois men’s basketball coach Brad Underwood reacts to Big Ten’s addition of USC, UCLA

Underwood believes move will be mutually beneficial for conference and schools
Brad Underwood speaks to the media on Friday, July 1, 2022.
Brad Underwood speaks to the media on Friday, July 1, 2022.(Heart of Illinois ABC)
Published: Jul. 1, 2022 at 6:21 PM CDT
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(Heart of Illinois ABC) - The Big Ten got a big shakeup on Thursday when the conference’s chancellors and presidents approved the addition of USC and UCLA starting in the 2024-2025 school season. Many questions started to arise with even more opinions about the realignment but Illinois head basketball coach Brad Underwood believes the move will be mutually beneficial for both the Big Ten and its newest members.

“It’s fabulous,” Underwood said on Friday. “You’re talking about two of the most historic, and I’m speaking from athletic programs. I’m also talking about two of the top academic institutions. They fit the Big Ten mold, basketball and football in particular have historic programs that play in great venues and I think it’s going to do nothing but benefit the Big Ten and i think the Big Ten will also help those two schools.”

One of the big talking points has been the coast-to-coast nature of this realignment. The Big Ten will now have teams on the east coast, in the midwest as well as on the west coast. Some worried about travel and road trips becoming more difficult but Underwood isn’t worried about that.

“You guys have got to understand I was at Western Illinois and we had Thursday/Saturday to Troy State to Central Conneticut and as far west as Cedar City, Utah,” Underwood said. “The MidCon Conference went national long before the Big Ten did. It’ll be okay.”

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