Pace quickens for Illinois

   CHAMPAIGN - Four practices into its season, Bill Self''s Illinois basketball team is further along than it was last season.

   That still doesn''t put the Illini very far along.

UI men''s basketball practice report

On Sunday, Frank Williams had tape on his right wrist. On Monday, the tape crept up to his thumb. At this rate, he’ll be mummified by next weekend.

Haddad earns league honor

   Senior outside hitter Shadia Haddad, who led Illinois to three victories last week, was named Big Ten Player of the Week in volleyball, the league announced Monday.

   Haddad averaged 4.5 kills and 3.3 digs a game in victories against DePaul, Michigan and Michigan State. In the four-game win at DePaul, Haddad had a match-high 18 kills, seven digs and three blocks.

Illini know the going rate

   CHAMPAIGN - Think a 5-1 record automatically earns a team a spot in the Top 25? Not quite.

   Fresh off a 35-14 dismantling of Indiana on Saturday, the Illinois football team landed one place out of the national rankings. Both the Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today polls have the Illini 26th.

Illini have bounce to step after loss

   CHAMPAIGN - Tricia Taliaferro''s Illinois women''s soccer team faced Penn State twice last season.

   The first time, Illinois lost 3-0, and it was clear the UI had a long way to go before competing with the talented Nittany Lions. The second time, Illinois came up just short, losing 2-1 in double overtime in the Big Ten tournament semifinals. Taliaferro knew her club was getting closer.

Lloyd doesn´t mind being decoy

   BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - On third down in the Illini''s second series Saturday at Indiana, Brandon Lloyd shook free for a 27-yard reception from Kurt Kittner.

   It was the critical play in a 71-yard touchdown drive that allowed Illinois to squeeze out a 7-6 halftime lead.

Wilson returns to forefront

   BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - The first part of Eugene Wilson''s 46-yard punt return was a thing of beauty.

   The ending needed work.

Harvey sighting a pleasant one

   BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Illinois coaches haven''t gotten on Rocky Harvey about his touchdown drought nearly as much as the tailback''s family and friends.

   They''re calling me all the time, always asking me, Dang, when are you going to get in the end zone again? When is it going to be your time?''  Harvey said. Now, finally, I don''t have to answer that anymore.

Rossow: Bowl outlook warming up

   BLOOMINGTON, Ind.  Some general observations from a game that didn''t deserve to be on TV for the first three quarters but belonged on prime time for the fourth:

UI-Indiana football game statistics

   Illinois 35, Indiana 14