Mahomet assistant principal keeps on believing

MAHOMET — Obstacles have never provided an insurmountable barrier for Courtney Porter.

She attended Shiloh High School, which had 25 students in her graduating class.

Best of Fred, No. 28: You go, girls!

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:

If someone were to chart the various athletic events I’ve covered, there’d be more girls’ basketball games on the list than anything else.

Illini legends, lists and lore: First-round draft picks

University of Illinois football players have been popular top-round selections in past NFL drafts. While their individual stocks may have been high at the time, many Illini first-round selections were selected before players who eventually blossomed into Pro Football Hall of Famers.

Sunday Conversation: Jay Spoonhour

Jay Spoonhour is no stranger to college basketball. The 44-year-old is in his third season as the men’s coach at Eastern Illinois. But he’s spent most of his life around the game thanks to his late father, Charlie Spoonhour. The Panthers are in a bit of a resurgence this season, compiling a nine-game winning streak before that was snapped Thursday night against Murray State.

Tate: Second-half woes creep back into picture

“We’ve lost more close games than maybe any team in the country.”

Those words by Minnesota coach Richard Pitino — referring to five Big Ten losses by five points or fewer — reminded that the Gophers’ 1-6 Big Ten record was a fooler.

MBB grades: Middling performance against Minnesota


In a close call over teammate Maurice Walker. Senior showed why he ranks among the top 10 scorers in program history, leading Minnesota with 28 points. He hit 5 of 7 three-pointers and 10 of 15 shots overall. Only beef with his game: He missed 3 of 6 free throws. But he added five assists.


Rice, Cosby on the mend

MINNEAPOLIS — At the end of Illinois’ bench sat Rayvonte Rice and Aaron Cosby, two starting guards for the Illini who are both sidelined with injuries.

Manager fulfills dream

MINNEAPOLIS — The buzz surrounding the Illinois basketball program in the 24 hours leading up to Saturday’s Big Ten game at Minnesota was the news that the Illini elevated student-manager Ryan Schmidt to the active roster as the Illini continues to be depleted by injuries.

Groce: 'We've got to get tougher'

MINNEAPOLIS — The soothing voice of Idina Menzel rang through Williams Arena as her hit “Let It Go” from the movie “Frozen” was played by the folks at Minnesota as Illinois coach John Groce called a timeout with 41.6 seconds remaining, his team trailing by nine at the time.

Jan. 26 Bob Asmussen chat

Monday, January 26, 2015 - 11:00am

Bob Asmussen helped cover his first Illinois men's basketball game for the first time in quite a while during last Wednesday's win against Purdue. What does he think is wrong with the Illini after Saturday's loss to Minnesota? What does Tim Beckman have to do in order to improve recruiting? What record will the Illini finish with next football season?