NCAA Men's Final Four - Practice

NCAA announces eight finalists for 2017-20 Final Fours

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On Monday, the NCAA announced eight potential sites for the men’s basketball Final Four during the 2017-2020 seasons.

The eight finalists announced by the NCAA are Atlanta, Indianapolis, Minneapolis, New Orleans, North Texas, Phoenix/Glendale, San Antonio and St. Louis.

The eight finalists have combined to host 24 Final Fours and are also scheduled to host the next two. Some of the names on the list are quite familiar with hosting the Final Four and others, like Minneapolis, would love to get another Final Four after waiting for over a decade.

The 2014 Final Four will be played in North Texas, Indianapolis will host in 2015 and Houston hosts the Final Four in 2016.

If you’re wondering what it takes for a city to host a Final Four, according to the NCAA, men’s Final Four venues, “must hold a minimum of 60,000 fans, and host cities or regions must be able to provide at least 10,000 full-service hotel rooms within reasonable proximity to the competition venue.”

Illinois’ injury woes continue as starting center needs knee surgery

George Niang,Abdel Nader,Mike Thorne, Jr.
AP Photo/Mark Wallheiser
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Illinois suffered another blow in what has already turned out to be a brutal season.

Mike Thorne is expected to miss the rest of the season after tearing his meniscus. He reportedly underwent surgery on Monday to repair the injury.

Thorne, a transfer from Charlotte, was starting at center for the Illini and doing a good job of it as well. He was averaging 13.4 points and 8.4 boards, although Illinois has started off the season 3-4.

The reason for that slow start has mainly been those injuries. Tracy Abrams is already out for the season after tearing his achilles, and the Illini training room looked like a M.A.S.H. unit. Kendrick Nunn just returned two games ago from surgery to repair a torn thumb ligament. LeRon Black is still getting back to speed after offseason knee surgery. Jaylon Tate is back after dislocating a finger. Jalen Coleman-Lands was slowed by a stress fracture.

John Groce entered this season on the hot seat, and dealing with all of these injuries certainly isn’t helping his cause.

NEW PODCAST: Recapping Feast Week

Kris Dunn
AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill
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We talk about a lot of stuff of the podcast today, mainly because a lot of stuff happened since we last spoke with you all.

For starters, we need to discuss the ‘realness’ of Syracuse and Xavier. Are they both truly top 15 teams, or do they just have top 15 resumes? We also dive into Chris Mack’s epic troll-job of Dayton at the Advocare Invitational final.

Other topics we touched on: Whether or not Scott is ever going to apologize to Wayne Selden, Wichita State’s tournament hopes, Texas A&M and whether we’d take Ben Simmons, Kris Dunn or Denzel Valentine today.

As always, you can subscribe to the podcast in iTunes right here. It’s the quickest way to get access on your cell phone or tablet.