Top of the morning, Jan. 21, 2014
Some weekend leftovers ...
— Hope you enjoyed Dave Hinton's profile of John Giuliani, the big-timer from Rantoul who donated $5 milion toward State Farm Center renovation. I can assure you Giuliana's claim that he is an avid basketball fan — and not a corporate fancy dan trying to fit in with the C Section crowd — is legit.
When Bill Self left for Kansas in 2003, we asked readers whom they would like to see as the next Illinois basketball coach. Giuliani took the time to write in — although his options didn't pan out.
"I would like to see Rick Majerus hired, although I realize this will not happen. He is one of the most consistent winners and has coached in a national championship game. He believes Illinois is a great destination job and would excel at recruiting this area and for our school. He apparently is not Ron Guenther's type of guy but would be excellent nonetheless, and he would stay! Long-shot prediction is Kelvin Sampson."
— Greg Wright, owner of Possum Trot in Oakwood, sent us his last-meal order too late for Sunday publication. But his submission was too good to ignore:
"I would probably want to be pretty decadent.
Appetizer — a dozen raw Kumamoto oysters with extra horseradish.
Salad — wedge with Stilton dressing, beefsteak tomato and pork belly!
Main — 16-ounce bone in Kobe New York Strip and lobster Mac n cheese. Don't need my veggies anymore!
Dessert — a Cronut from the originator Dominique Ansel (never had one so could be a great decision or a bad one. I'd be going out with a gamble but pretty safe bet, I think!)
To finish — 23-year-old Pappy Van Winkle Bourbon neat! Or just leave me the bottle!"
— On our IlliniHQ.com Facebook page, we asked if John Groce went too far with his sideline antics the last two games. The highly unscientific conclusion: Nope. Most readers who chimed in were OK with his coat-throwing, foot-stomping, ref-angering outbursts.
Ben Bradley's answer summed it up. "Not until he throws a chair on the court."
Weigh in for yourself or ask our basketball beat writer, MARCUS JACKSON, about it during his weekly online chat at IlliniHQ.com. Submit questions any time, and Marcus will answer them at 12:30 p.m. Wednesday.