Illinois was facing a 10-day layoff due to a postponed game with Michigan, but the Illini have been able to avoid that outcome.

Brad Underwood’s club will now face Nebraska on Friday, making up a game that was originally scheduled for Jan. 13. It had to be postponed due to a COVID-19 outbreak within the Huskers’ program.

The Big Ten also announced a make-up game between Illinois and Michigan State. Their previously-scheduled meeting was set for Jan. 23 but was postponed because of COVID-19 issues with the Spartans.

Illinois is scheduled to play two games inbetween these makeup contests: vs. Northwestern on Feb. 16 and at Minnesota on Feb. 20.

This is a tremendous opportunity for the Illini to pad its win/loss record as it looks to improve its seed for the NCAA Tournament. Michigan State, Northwestern and Nebraska are currently the three worst teams in the Big Ten, according to record.

Illinois has been surging lately and could still have a shot at a No. 1 seed and a Big Ten regular season championship. Its currently two games behind Michigan in the loss column, but the Wolverines haven’t played a game since Jan. 22.

Illinois has won four straight games.