Anthony Zilis is on board at The News-Gazette. So that means our new prep sports coordinator is ready to chat. What fall sports teams appear loaded? Will any state titles emerge from the area in the next few months? What football team is the best in the area? Ask away, and Zilis will deliver. Feel free to submit questions early and often in his weekly chat, which gets rolling at 12:30 p.m.
Anthony Zilis spent his freshman year at the University of Illinois rooting on Ron Zook's Rose Bowl team.
"I was spoiled at that point," he said. "I thought the next year they'd win the national championship."
Here are a few that deserve more than a cursory glance but won’t get it:
— I’ve never seen a wrestler like Mahomet-Seymour’s Rob Porter. Before he became a state champion for the Bulldogs (105 pounds in 1984), he endured a freshman season in which he couldn’t get on the mat.
I always thought I’d write a book or two. The feeling was based on the naivety of youthfulness.
By ANTHONY ZILIS
The countdown began about a year ago, when Bob Miller drew the first black “X” through Aug. 1 on the calendar that stretches across the kitchen wall of the two-story Monticello home he and his wife bought 77 years ago. In 10 days, the “X’s” will engulf the large red dot between Aug. 10 and 11.
CHAMPAIGN — Monday was a big day for Tyanna Omazic.
The 6-foot-1 Class of 2017 middle blocker out of Olathe, Kan., committed to Illinois early Monday afternoon after spending the day with her future teammates and coaches. Then she got a taste of what Big Ten volleyball will be like when she got in a practice with the Illini before heading home.
Retiring executive sports editor FRED KRONER has seen a lot in his 34 years at The News-Gazette. Each Sunday until his last day, he’ll share his most memorable stories:
My interest in numbers started at the same time as my interest in sports.
The reasons were different.
For much of the past 12 years, I’ve written weekly or biweekly lists on a variety of topics, most of which were sports-related.
These selections are my 25 favorites, including the dates they were published in the newspaper.
There’s one list that’s not a top five. It’s a top one.
I don’t have a favorite athlete, but I do have a favorite athlete’s name.
TEAMS OF THE YEAR
1. Unity boys’ track and field. Class 1A state champions had nine athletes with first-place medals, either individually or as part of a relay.
2. Centennial baseball. Made a statement postseason run, reaching the Elite Eight for the first time in Class 3A.