The Fighting Illini basketball team is off to an 8-0 start and is showing signs that it may be a team to be reckoned with in the Big Ten this year.
By the end of this week, it has a good shot at starting 10-0.
With a roster that is made up of only one senior and mostly underclassmen, the Fighting Illini have surprisingly shown the ability to gel early on.
They are getting contributions from several players, and most guys seem to be falling into their roles already, which is a good sign.
I would warn you to be cautiously optimistic because last year's team started out 10-1, and we all know how that played out, but I will say that this version of the Fighting Illini seems to have a lot more fight in them than last year's team.
This is a talented, young team and they are expected to—and will—go through some growing pains, but as an Illini fan you can't help but be excited about what you've seen so far.
They are arguably more talented from top to bottom than last year and just seem to have the toughness and determination that was lacking a year ago.
It's still early in the season and things can always change, but so far we have seen a lot of good things out of this group.
Here's a look at five things we have learned thus far.