Groce wants Rice more aggressive

Published 01/22 2014 05:43PM

Updated 01/22 2014 06:33PM

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Illinois head coach John Groce said Wednesday he wants Rayvonte Rice to be even more aggressive in order to take his game and the team to the next level.  Rice leads the team with 17.4 ppg, and Groce says the last couple days in practice are the best he has looked since straining his adductor muscle January 12th against Northwestern.

Groce added that teams are starting to get a step ahead of Rice, working defensively to take away his strengths. 

"I'm feeling a lot better," Rice said.  "Just getting treatment every day and trying to get one-percent better every day.  I've been trying to fight through it, but right now our focus is on Ohio State."

Rice and the rest of the guys will try to snap a four-game losing streak Thursday night in Columbus.

"We're all composed," Tracy Abrams said of their current losing streak.  "We understand what we need to do.  We just have to go out there and do it."

Illinois and Ohio State tip off at 6:00 pm CT Thursday night.  The game will be televised on ESPN.

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