Sports

Sports

LetterRIP

We asked our online readers who they thought would be the UI''s top men''s basketball recruiting priority. Some responses:

Small makes major move

Illinois golf coach Mike Small finished second in the PGA Club Professional Championship in Nashport, Ohio, to qualify for the 86th PGA Championship in August, the year''s final major.

Small shot a 3-under-par 69 Sunday to finish 1 shot behind Bob Sowards of Columbus, Ohio. The top 25 earned berths in the PGA Championship at Whistling Straits in Kohler, Wis.

AskBrett

Brett Dawson, our resident college basketball expert, will take questions on his specialty. He can be reacehd at bdawson@news-gazette.com.

Coach''s decision leaves UI signee stuck on bench

BLOOMINGTON – Shaun Pruitt has seen all-star games. He knows the drill.

A little flash, a little dash and an extra-large dose of showmanship are the order of the day. At least that''s what the Illinois-bound forward thought.

UI golfer in right position at Open

SAVOY – Playing from the women''s tees can help some golfers and hinder others.

Meghan Naik took advantage of shooting from the shorter tees Saturday to record a 1-over-par 75 over the University of Illinois Orange Course to win the UI Wom-en''s Open by 8 strokes against Ainsley Wellinghoff and Wendy Evans.

Brett''s random thoughts

Illinois fans should be happy to learn that the Illini aren''t resting on their laurels this offseason.

Uphill climb for future Illini

CHAMPAIGN – Illinois fans can get a glimpse of the future tonight in Bloomington.

Just how distant that future is remains to be seen.

Year off due to injury hasn''t squashed former Illini''s dream

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Instead of churning up turf in his baseball cleats, Larry Sutton was mowing the green stuff in his yard.

Instead of turning on an inside fastball with that sweet left-handed swing of his, Sutton was taking aim at golf balls with an assortment of clubs.

Illini women again tap Pittsburgh for recruit

The Pittsburgh pipeline is flowing again for the Illinois women''s basketball team.

The area that produced Cindy Dallas and Erin Wigley has yielded a recruit for the 2005-06 season. Danielle Gratton, a 6-foot guard/forward, gave the Illini an oral commitment, joining St. Louis center Erin McCarthy in the ''05 class.

UI recruit enjoying the ride

CHAMPAIGN – Jamar Smith is in a hurry to get here.

Oh, the silky 6-foot-3 guard intends to savor his senior season at Peoria Richwoods, plans to enjoy himself before he begins his Illinois basketball career in 2005-06.