Sports

Sports

Survey says

We''ve asked Illinois football players for some of their favorites. Today''s panelists:

Small''s world

Illinois golf coach Mike Small, playing in his first PGA Championship, didn''t get much sleep before Thursday''s opening round. Here''s his report:

"Got up at 4:15 because I had the first tee time (7 a.m.). Usually the club pros and the qualifiers play in the last few groups the first day, and they have a tendency to fill the earlier tee times with players, so I took it as a compliment.

Illini catcher honored

The Cape Cod Baseball League has given its annual Daniel J. Silva Sportsmanship Award to Illinois catcher Chris Robinson.

The honor, presented every year since 1973, recognizes the player who exhibits the best qualities of sportsmanship in the summer collegiate league. Robinson, who plays for the Hyannis (Mass.) Mets, received the honor Sunday before a home game.

''Nasty, a bit crazy''

CHAMPAIGN – He has been in school just as long as Jon Beutjer. But nobody calls Mike O''Brien "Grandpa." At least, not to his face.

The sixth-year Illinois defensive end is trying to return from a torn ACL sustained after the 2003 opener. After three days of practice, O''Brien said his leg is holding up well.

Tate: Cardinals'' streak worth remembering

It''s Alice in Wonderland time for Cardinal Nation. It''s like watching "The Natural," where you know who''ll win the pennant. Is this a deal with the devil?

Every day produces a new hero. Every loss seems to ignite a winning streak. You just don''t win 2-1 with two hits (Tuesday) unless Lady Luck has decided to make it a special season.

Survey says

We''ve asked Illinois football players for some of their favorites. Today''s panelists:

Illinois'' finished product

CHAMPAIGN – The hair looks about the same as a year ago. The body is a lot different. And so is his status on the Illinois football team.

At the start of the 2003 training camp, J Leman was just another freshman linebacker on his way to a redshirt. He weighed 210 pounds and had plenty of work to do before getting on the field.

Illinois goalkeeper a finalist for award

Illinois All-American Leisha Alcia is among 25 women''s collegiate soccer players named to the 2004 Hermann Trophy watch list.

The award, sponsored by the Missouri Athletic Club, will be presented to the top player from the upcoming season at a dinner Jan. 8 in St. Louis.

Small makes progress

HAVEN Wis – Mike Small''s first PGA Championship round ended a lot better than it started.

The Illinois golf coach steadied himself on the final nine holes of today''s first round, finishing at 3-over-par 75 on the long and treacherous Whistling Straits course.

Survey says

We''ve asked Illinois football players for some of their favorites. Today''s panelists: