The 1980s, ‘90s and 2000s were the halcyon days of Illinois’ “rivalry” with Northwestern. OK ... the 1920s, ‘40s and ‘50s, too. Lots of wins for the Orange and Blue. The last 10 games, though, have been even with a 5-5 series record and the Wildcats notching nearly as many wins since January 2010 as they had against Lou Henson, Lon Kruger and Bill Self combined (six).
CHAMPAIGN — Matt Bollant tried to bring Tyra Buss to Illinois. On Wednesday, the Indiana star showed why.
The Mount Carmel native scored 21 points, had five rebounds, four assists and two steals as the Hoosiers cruised to an 80-68 win at State Farm Center.
Bollant was impressed.
The start of spring ball is a month away. What position battles will take place this spring? Who does sports editor and beat writer Matt Daniels see making a big leap this offseason? How is the health of Mikey Dudek, Dre Brown, Teko Powell and other Illini? Is a bowl game possible in 2016? Anything is fair game in Daniels' weekly give-and-take, which gets going at 2 p.m. on Friday.
CHAMPAIGN — The STAR is gone. So is the LEO.
Defensive end Dawuane Smoot may still round into a star during his final season at Illinois. He just won’t do that playing the LEO.
Confused? Don’t be.
BELLEVILLE — Javon Pickett tried to keep all the negative thoughts out of his head when he went back to the doctor Monday to get the results from the MRI exam taken of his injured right knee.
It is the devious nature of the beast that those with the strongest credentials for the UI athletic directorship could not allow themselves to be interviewed last week.
That’s the way it works. Top people don’t apply. Heady programs seek them out.
SportsTalk 02-09-16: Play now!
Steve Kelly and Loren Tate host the Tuesday edition of Sports Talk. They talk with Howard Griffith.
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Each week until Selection Sunday on March 13, college basketball writer Scott Richey
will project the top four seeds for each region in the NCAA tournament. The Big Ten continues to impress, with Iowa and Maryland garnering two No. 1 seeds with a month left in the regular season:
Khalid Lewis and Jaylon Tate have almost exactly split point guard duties at Illinois this season.
Here’s a look at how the other 13 league point guards have fared, courtesy Illini beat writer Scott Richey:
Indiana: Yogi Ferrell, 6-0, 180, Sr.; 17.3 ppg, 5.8 apg
Became Hoosiers’ all-time assists leader with nine against Illinois on Jan. 19.