Eighteen years ago today — March 27, 1998 — Kevin Rudden blasted three home runs and singled in a seventh RBI as the Illini baseball team clobbered Michigan 20-3 at windy Illinois Field. Dusty Rhodes, Aaron Nieckula and Aaron Peelman also homered for the Illini.
Chris Peacock knows Josh Whitman. And he knows Illinois athletics.
Peacock and Whitman worked together at Illinois from 2005 to ’08. When Whitman became the athletic director at Washington University, he brought Peacock to the St. Louis school as his right-hand man, naming him deputy director.
Now, Whitman is in charge at Illinois.
Happy 50th birthday to former Illini basketball co-captain Glynn Blackwell.
URBANA — With trustee approval under his belt, new University of Illinois athletic director Josh Whitman has lots to ponder once he officially takes over on Saturday.
What's first on his list? It's up to Whitman, according to interim Chancellor Barbara Wilson.
It’s Oscar “Make Believe” Sunday, so let’s apply “best of” categories to real Illini sports figures.
We don’t need host Chris Rock to offset the Hollywood outcry about a lack of diversity.
Fifty years ago today — Feb. 28, 1966 — behind a magnificent 30-point, 20-rebound performance from Rich Jones, the Illini defeated Purdue 98-81. The victory lifted Illinois’ record to 7-5, two games behind league-leading Michigan. Said UI coach Harry Combes about his talented second-year player, “Rich improved more his sophomore year than any Illinois player in history.
What's going on with Illinois athletics? What are the biggest challenges Josh Whitman faces? Will John Groce be around for a fifth season? Does Bill Cubit have a chance to coach Illinois beyond 2016? How does The News-Gazette handle coverage of certain events? Sports editor Matt Daniels will take any and all inquiries in his 2 p.m. chat on Thursday. Feel free to submit questions beforehand.
Like Blockbuster and pay telephone booths, the college coach who doubles as athletic director is obsolete. Outmoded. A relic of time past.
ADs are mostly businessmen today, backgrounded in administration or holding a law degree like the UI’s Josh Whitman. They have oversight responsibilities for multiple sports, but their principal job is schmoozing donors and updating facilities.
Josh Whitman will officially become the 14th permanent athletic director in Illinois history on March 21. A look at his predecessors:
Mike Thomas 2011-2015
COMMENT: Hiring, and subsequent firing, of Tim Beckman is defining legacy
Josh Whitman is the newest athletic director in the Big Ten. How the league’s athletic leaders stack up in terms of seniority and age (*interim):
AD: Josh Whitman
Starting: March 21, 2016
AD: Beth Goetz*
AD since: Aug. 7, 2015