Classic reunion for Ellis

As the Illinois football team was pounding California in Berkeley last weekend, the Illini had a very interested fan down the coast in Los Angeles.

Jillian Ellis is entering her third year as UCLA's women's soccer coach, but she still feels a part of the Illinois team she started and then left after the 1998 season.

Game-time decision

Northwestern fans will have a choice to make tonight, a choice Ron Turner hopes Illini fans never face.

The Wildcat faithful with an allegiance to high school football can either support the local prep team or check out Northwestern on ESPN in a 7 p.m. kickoff at UNLV.

Panthers adept at filling the ranks

CHARLESTON Eastern Illinois´ football staff has experienced a 67-percent turnover in full-time assistants since last season.

It almost was 100 percent.

Big Ten Insider

Kurt Kittner isn´t on the list. Neither is Brandon Lloyd.

The stars of Illinois´ rout of California didn´t receive any votes in this week´s Scripps Howard News Service Heisman Trophy poll.

Illinois picks up QB candidate

CHAMPAIGN The Iowa transfer has landed. No surprise: Quarterback Jon Beutjer is now at Illinois.

The former News-Gazette All-State Player of the Year enrolled Wednesday at the school. He likely will begin practice with the team next week.

Wise move pans out for Florida

   CHAMPAIGN Mary Wise has not set foot in Huff Hall, but if it´s anything like the Kenney Gym she remembers, the Florida volleyball coach is convinced her players are in for a treat.

   "Champaign is one of the unique places around the country where volleyball is a big deal and home matches are a big event," Wise said. "They put on a show up there. They did it long before anyone else figured it out: the band, the rowdy students, the great atmosphere."

Illini soccer 18th in poll

The Illini women´s soccer team , which opened its season with victories against Iowa State and Kansas, is ranked No. 18 in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America poll.

"It was exciting to be successful in our first weekend," Illinois coach Tricia Taliaferro said. "It´s nice to get the respect of the other coaches, but it´s a long season."

UI recruit pops in

   DALLAS Fortunately for Bill Self, one cola con didn´t outweigh a plethora of pros for Kyle Wilson.

   Wilson, a versatile 6-foot-8 forward, fell in love with the Illini program two weeks ago on a campus visit. He liked the facilities, loved the staff and long had admired the Big Ten.

Illini Insider

News-Gazette Staff Writer Jeff huth''s review and preview of University of Illinois sports

Tatelines: Irish, Illini mixing it up in basketball

In the 10 seasons prior to coach John McLeod's departure in 1999, Notre Dame became a “nonfactor” on the Division I basketball scene.

Unbelievably, the Irish won just 134 of 291 games (46 percent) before All-American Troy Murphy lifted them into the 20-win category the last two years. It took a late three-pointer to keep Notre Dame out of the NCAA Sweet 16 last March.