Originally written on The B1g Time  |  Last updated 11/17/14
If you haven't seen groundhogs day, first off - what the hell? Second off - shame on you. Lastly, you have seen it and you just don't know it yet. That's because we're witnessing a big time case of it with 2012/13 Illinois Fighting Illini basketball team and some of us, if not most of us fell for it once again this year - so I guess it's shame on all of us.  Just how groundhogs day is this team? Let's play a little game of guess the season shall we? Illinois started the season off hot, winning two games against teams that will make the NCAA tournament only to lose to rival Missouri. What Illini season are we talking about? No, we aren't talking about this season, we're talking about the 2011-12 Bruce Weber led Illini. However, you wouldn't be wrong in saying the same thing about the 2012-13 version of the Illini either as they own two impressive wins over Butler (the Maui Invitational championship) and at Gonzaga, only to lose to Missouri.  So, we'll take either as the correct answer to that one. The Illini put their near flawless record up against Purdue early on in Big Ten play, on the road, and lost. Only to come back and beat a top 10 ranked Ohio State squad and follow that up with three straight losses immediately following the OSU win.What Illini team are we talking about?  If you guessed both you are correct and you should be seeing a pattern by now. Yes, the Illini were able to jump up and bite another ranked opponent last year and they could well do so again this year, but it's seriously eerie how much of a mirror image last season and this one have been already for this team. The point of this little exercise? It's not only to point out how groundhog day(ish) these two seasons have been, but to also point out that pundits and bloggers (myself included) should've seen what is happening right now coming from the very beginning. It also points out that perhaps we put way, WAY too much stock into what a team is doing in November and early December than waiting to see what a team is doing in mid-January and early February.  We all love to point to and talk about rankings from the jump of the season, but if we're really self-analytical (and we should be) and honest, perhaps we are better off waiting to talk about how good a team is and that means stopping the pattern of putting too much faith in arbitrary rankings and "strength of schedules". I don't know about you, but taking a look at a team through the prism of Ken Pomeroy or other analytical means sounds a heck of a lot better than some arbitrary ranking that a writer or coach (who probably have never seen team X or team Y play a game) put together and tell us it's gospel. So, perhaps we all have learned a lesson through all of this. Stop putting so much faith a team that wins two good games sprinkled around some really crappy games against teams they should've beaten until they can prove it on a night in and night out basis. Oh, and also stop putting teams that lose tough games early in the season on the scrap heap until they do it again in conference play. I mean, all you need to do is look at the Illini for examples of the former and to Wisconsin for the later.  Maybe the Illini will turn it all around and find a way to win some really good games down the stretch, but I'm a fan of history and recent Illini history with the players on this team tell me it's probably going to be more of the same - winning a rare game against a ranked Big Ten opponent and then turning around and losing a head scratching game or two as well. 
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

New MLB commissioner: Return to Montreal is possible

Report: Pats employee taking footballs into bathroom on video

Greg Anthony caught offering $80 to undercover officer for sex

Robert Kraft wants apology from NFL if nothing found

NFL may be very close to returning to Los Angeles

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Kobe definitely returning next season

Report: Yankees don't want to pay A-Rod home run bonuses

Browner wants Patriots to injure Sherman, Thomas

Report: Rams, other teams interested in Nick Foles

Tom Brady: 'My feelings got hurt' in Deflategate controversy

Odell Beckham Jr. says he played with two hamstring tears

Buffalo Bills: The greatest champion that never was

Six best Super Bowl coaches of all-time

Five key matchups for Super Bowl XLIX

Early B1G predictions for 2015

Remembering Ernie Banks

Allenby rang up $3,400 strip club bill on night of 'kidnapping'

Brady's dad: QB's relationship with Pats 'will end badly'

WATCH: Skittles Super Bowl commercial looks ridiculous

The five best Super Bowl defenses of all time

Mark Brunell explains why he got emotional over Deflategate

NFL was profiting off Marshawn Lynch's crotch grab

NFL finally getting its own YouTube channel

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
THE B1G TIME

Six best Super Bowl coaches of all-time

Five key matchups for Super Bowl XLIX

Early Big Ten predictions for 2015

Remembering Ernie Banks

Pats employee took footballs into restroom?

Report: Kobe not retiring

More questions about Allenby's story

Yanks don't want to pay A-Rod bonuses

Looking back at Super Bowls 1-48

Super Bowl MVPs through the years

The five best Super Bowl defenses

Burnell explains why he got emotional

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.