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Illinois Opens Season At Home Against Loyola
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) -- Illinois will start finding out whether its young roster is ready to compete when it opens basketball season at home against Loyola.

The Illini and Ramblers tip off Friday night at 8 p.m.

Illinois is coming off a 20-14 season that ended two games into the NCAA Tournament. But the Illini lost four of their starters to graduation and a fifth player, promising freshman Jeremy Richmond, left the team for the NBA draft. He wasn't drafted and now awaits trial after pleading not guilty to battery charges.

The Illini roster includes six freshmen.

Friday will be the Loyola debut for new Ramblers coach Porter Moser.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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