Shannon came off the bench and played 28 minutes. He had four assists and made 8 of 10 shots from the free throw line.
He was suspended by the university on Dec. 28 after he was arrested on a felony rape charge for an alleged September incident in Lawrence, Kansas. U.S. District Court Judge Colleen Lawless, however, ruled Friday that the university had violated Shannon’s civil rights and granted a preliminary injunction that required Illinois to reinstate Shannon to the team.
A preliminary hearing in the criminal case has been set for Feb. 23.
Illini fans showed support for Shannon by cheering when the guard entered the court for pregame warmups and giving him a standing ovation when he checked into the game with 17:37 to go in the first half.
“Our team feels whole again,” teammate Justin Harmon said after the game. “We have our best player back.”
Illinois coach Brad Underwood said he was pleased with Shannon’s performance considering he hadn’t practiced with the team or played for three weeks.
“You could tell he was tired at times,” Underwood said. “He integrated in a nice way. He was pretty solid.”
Shannon’s lawyers had requested the injunction earlier this month, claiming the school had made a “rush to judgment” and used an “unfair” process when it decided to suspend Shannon indefinitely late last month after a warrant was issued for his arrest. A woman at a bar alleged that Shannon had inappropriately touched her and sexually assaulted her.
The Illini (14-4, 5-2 Big Ten) were 4-2 in six games without Shannon, who hadn’t played since Illinois’ 97-73 victory over Missouri in St. Louis on Dec. 22.
Illinois will next play on Wednesday at Northwestern.
ESPN’s Myron Medcalf and The Associated Press contributed to this report.