Illinois adds transfer Mike Thorne

Illinois has picked up a key addition for next season in Charlotte graduate transfer Mike Thorne.

The 6-foot-11, 270-pound redshirt junior Thorne averaged 10.1 points and 7.3 rebounds for the 49ers and will be eligible to play for the Illini this coming season. Thorne visited Illinois this weekend, and had visits scheduled to Kansas and Kentucky in the next two weeks.

"I just knew Illinois was the right place for me. It's in the Big Ten, and I loved the family atmosphere," Thorne told ESPN on Saturday.

Illinois finished 19-14 this past season and 8-8 in Big Ten play. Coach John Groce loses leading scorer Rayvonte Rice as well as guard Ahmad Starks and big man Nnanna Egwu.

"I think I can go in and help," Thorne added. "I feel as though it's a great opportunity."