Watch CBS News

Terrence Shannon Jr. Kansas rape case: What we know so far

CBS News Live
CBS Sports HQ Live

University of Illinois standout Terrence Shannon took a road trip last fall that has forever altered his future. 

A star basketball player with top-tier NBA talent, Shannon led the Illini to the Big Ten Tournament title, scoring a tournament-record 40 points against Nebraska and then 34 points in the championship against Wisconsin. The Illini advanced to the Elite Eight in the NCAA basketball tournament on Thursday night, defeating Iowa State. 

During that last game, fans heckled Shannon, chanting, "No means no!'

What happened with Terrence Shannon in Kansas

In September 2023, Shannon went to Lawrence, Kansas, to attend the Kansas-Illinois football game. According to court documents in the case, Illini graduate assistant DyShawn Hobson drove Shannon and a teammate, Justin Harmon, from Champaign at the direction of Illinois assistant coaches. Hobson is also Shannon's roommate. 

Nebraska v Illinois
Terrence Shannon Jr. of the Illinois Fighting Illini goes to the basket past Sam Hoiberg of the Nebraska Cornhuskers in the Semifinals of the Big Ten Tournament on March 16, 2024.  David Berding / Getty Images

The three met members of the Kansas basketball team at the Jayhawk Cafe. It was there that Shannon allegedly grabbed a woman's buttocks and "digitally penetrated her vagina without her consent," according to court filings. Shannon drove home hours later. 

Before the victim reported the incident to police, investigators found that she had used her phone to search images of the Kansas basketball and football teams and the Illinois basketball team to identify Shannon as her attacker, court records show. 

Shannon was suspended from the Illinois basketball team

Shannon was charged with rape and sexual battery, and he was suspended from the team on Dec. 27. University officials were aware of the investigation throughout the fall and had been having discussions internally about the case.

The next day, Shannon traveled to Lawrence and posted bond. 

In January, Shannon filed a lawsuit challenging the suspension, arguing that the suspension caused irreparable harm, namely to earn a living playing basketball. 

As a projected first-round NBA draft pick this June, Shannon will earn between $2 million and $3.5 million a year. 

Shannon claimed that there were no witnesses. Court documents indicate there were surveillance cameras in the crowded bar. The charging documents in the case list two witnesses, Cori A Green and another using their initials. 

Shannon was allowed to return to the team

Federal Judge Colleen Lawless allowed Shannon to return to the team, noting the suspension would cause irreparable harm to his name, image and likeness, and future career earnings.

He missed six games and returned to the lineup for a game on Jan. 21 against Rutgers. 

The "suspension for all practical purposes is for the remainder of Plaintiff's college basketball career," she wrote. 

"The Court further finds that Plaintiff has no adequate remedy at law and will suffer irreparable harm without an injunction. The potential harm to Plaintiff outweighs any harm to the University. The public interest is not harmed by granting injunctive relief to allow for additional procedural safeguards while he is presumed innocent of the criminal charges."

Shannon has raised the level of his play in March. The Illini are 9-1 for the month, losing only to Purdue in the last game of the regular season. In the first three games of the NCAA tournament, Shannon has averaged 28 points on nearly 60% shooting from the field. 

The next hearing in the case is in May. 

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.