Top 50 teams in 2017: No. 5, Ohio State

Best of ... Teams

No. 5: Ohio State

Coach: Urban Meyer

2016 record: 11-2

Projected 2017 record: 11-1

Circle the date: Nov. 25 at Michigan

Bowl trip: Orange

Illini's new practice location won't disrupt other teams

URBANA — Rugby scrums and lacrosse sticks on the Campus Recreation fields in Urbana will give way to helmets, pads and footballs during the month of August.

The Illinois football team is moving its training camp east to spare the regular practice field outside Memorial Stadium from the wear and tear of a month's worth of drills.

A life remembered: 'She never had anyone on the team, but she loved SJO'

ST. JOSEPH — The cards arrived every November.

Former St. Joseph-Ogden football head coach Dick Duval came to expect them.

They thanked him for his dedication during the season and congratulated him on his hard work.

They were always from the same person.

Nita Brooks.

"She never had anyone on the team," Duval said, "but she loved SJO."

Top 50 most important Illini: No. 5, Jaylen Dunlap

Best of ... Illini

No. 5: Jaylen Dunlap, DB

Ron Zook and 'Dumb Loren'

Ron Zook won more games than all but four Illinois football coaches, knocked off No. 1 Ohio State and took his '07 team to the Rose Bowl.

Tatelines: The truth about Ron Zook

Tatelines: The truth about Ron Zook: Play now!

Ron Zook and Loren Tate aren't on speaking terms. "He probably blames me for getting fired," said Tate, on the Illinois football beat for 51 years. Zook won 34 games in C-U, including one that Tate considers the biggest in modern times (vs. No. 1 Ohio State in '07) but was sent packing after seven seasons. During that time, Zook and Tate sparred.


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Senior Legion state tournament set for Rantoul

RANTOUL — The views beyond Wabash Park's right field fence give an indication of what Rantoul's past was like.

The town that used to call Chanute Air Force Base home will have baseball teams from all pockets of the state descending upon Wabash Park this week, with Rantoul set to host the American Legion state baseball tournament.

Tate: Penn State moves on from shame

CHICAGO — Check back five years and you'll see a sports world awash in what we now call "fake news."

Reality check for Fleck, other coaches

CHICAGO — P.J. Fleck said he wouldn't necessarily have chosen "Being P.J. Fleck" as the title for the show premiering next week on ESPNU about his transition from Western Michigan to Minnesota coach.

But he was more than happy to be involved when the network came calling.

Defending state champs back for more

DANVILLE — Danville Post 210 baseball coach Allan Shepherd expected an explosion of excitement from his team after it won the Fourth Division tournament. After all, a trip to state is never a guarantee, even for a defending champion that returns a majority of its roster.

What he saw, though, was a business-like celebration.