Top of the Morning, June 20, 2014
Mike Wallner has helped run the UI Open for the last 25 years. He has been a part of it longer than that, dating to his time playing in the prestigious local golf event as a high schooler in the late 1970s and early '80s.
The director of golf at the University of Illinois courses in Savoy knows the tournament well. So when Wallner says the field for this year's event, which begins Saturday at the UI Orange Course, is one of the strongest he can remember, he speaks from years of experience (tourney field, C-4).
"I really believe, looking at the entries, there are about 20 guys who can legitimately win it this year," Wallner said. "This is a really good field."
Six former champions (David Deschler, Tom Wilkes Jr., Derek Meinhart, Paul Dalbey, Joe Thompson and Tim Hoss Jr.) are among the entrants. Hoss, the defending champion, is the only five-time winner in UI Open history.
In addition to a host of current college players, including David Keenan (Chicago State), Seth Trolia (Bradley), Garrett Cox (Bradley), Drew Trujillo (Colorado) and Alex Burge (Illinois), the field will include some older players, thanks to a new super-senior division (62 and up).
"That's helped the numbers a lot and has helped some guys stay involved because those guys didn't want to play from the regular white tees anymore," Wallner said.
Enough of the golf talk. Here's more to keep you entertained this weekend:
7 p.m., MTV
You've been hearing "Catfish" used as a verb since Manti Te'o was duped into believing he had found the love of his life over the Internet. Since MTV doesn't show videos anymore, you get this kind of programming: People who think they've fallen in love via the world wide web with someone they've never met — real or fake. If nothing else, it should make single folks, myself included, feel better about your bachelor/bachelorette life because at least you're not these poor souls.
This film serves as a lesson to youngsters out there that planning illegal underage drinking parties usually turns into a disaster. While Jonah Hill and Michael Cera are entertaining, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, who recently made a trip to the UI campus, steals the show as McLovin. If nothing else, this film served as the big-screen debut of one of my favorites, Emma Stone.
U.S. vs. Portugal
4:30 p.m., ESPN
U.S. striker Jozy Altidore is out with an injured hamstring, but Portugal might be without megastar Cristiano Ronaldo. A win likely advances the Americans out of the group stage and into the knockout round. Our advice: Watch with dozens of your closest friends at your local watering hole. When John BrookS or Clint Dempsey scores the game-winner, you won't mind leaving soaked in beer as the chants of "USA, USA, USA" ring through the establishment.