Fred's Blog

Fred's Blog

All-decade clarification

It seems that there is some confusion and misunderstanding about what encompasses inclusion for the 19-sport All-Decade teams, which we have been publishing every Monday and will continue to do so through May 10.

What seemed obvious to me may not be that clear to others. The decade started on Jan. 1, 2000 and ended on Dec. 31, 2009. Period. What happened during those weeks and months is taken into account and what occurred prior to or thereafter is not considered.

Live from Class 1A boys' basketball state championship game

PEORIA -- We're courtside, and we're 30 minutes away from tipoff for the Class 1A state championship boys' basketball game, featuring a Salt Fork Storm team with 26 consecutive victories and a Sessier-Valier team which endured a stretch starting in early January when it lost seven of 10 games.
Sessier brings a 26-9 record into the finals. Salt Fork is 32-1, a school record for wins for the Catlin and Jamaica all-sports cooperative.

Playing in Peoria

PEORIA -- Nine minutes until tip-off of Salt Fork's first boys' basketball state semifinal game.

Carver Arena is about half full. The Salt Fork cheering contingent is loud -- as usual -- and could be the proverbial sixth man.

The Storm left the floor for their final words of wisdom from coach Aaron Hird before tipoff. Warmups looked good. No obvious signs of tension.

This was a sight to see

It didn't strike me until the final girls' basketball regular-season game I covered. It was a Friday night (Feb. 5) at Champaign in a non-conference contest where Fisher defeated Judah Christian.

Tournament time exciting, bittersweet

The regional tournaments are in full force for Class 1A and 2A girls' basketball teams. Throughout the area -- and throughout the state -- schools are viewing the postseason as a second chance for success or to make a statement about how much they've improved.

On one hand, it's great to see the underdog or unheralded teams shine in the tournament. It's further proof that on that proverbial given day, most teams can be beaten. It's a testament that hard work -- quite often -- does pay dividends.

Good decision by Rayvonte Rice

Out-of-state choice helps alleviate pressure of expectation

Incentive plan for prep coaches

Is this an idea whose time has arrived?

Looking for a Friday night basketball game?

Here's what we know will be played

The decade past

How we're coming up with the choices for our high school All-Decade teams

Centennial boys improve to 2-0

Short-handed Danville puts up another valiant effort