Unselfish Acuna deflects credit all the way to the end

CHAMPAIGN – If Illinois point guard Maggie Acuna, one of three seniors to be honored at tonight's Senior Night festivities, leaves a legacy for her women's basketball team, it is in the manner of being a good teammate.

That much, Theresa Grentz says, was shown recently when Acuna, one of three Illini who share a blog on the school's Web site, wrote about her hopes for the final few weeks of the season.

Harkins sparkles in defeat

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Illinois sophomore Macall Harkins defeated a nationally ranked player, but the 49th-ranked Illini lost 6-1 to 32nd-ranked Purdue in their Big Ten Conference opener Wednesday.

What to watch

Staff writer Jeff Huth offers three storylines to follow as the Illinois baseball team opens the 2006 season at 6 p.m. Friday against the host school at the Stetson Invitational in DeLand, Fla.:

Horton-Brown matchup fueled with admiration

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – As Michigan guard Daniel Horton completed the last of a gaggle of interviews following his 39-point torching of Illinois on Tuesday, he was looking for an assist.

"Has Dee walked out yet?" Horton asked a Michigan official, referring, of course, to Illinois guard Dee Brown.

TATE: Guard struggles tough to overcome

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Tom Wywrot is a University of Michigan publicist. He is persuasive in promoting Wolverine players for all-conference recognition.

And he made a stern point Tuesday night. If, as we imagine, Dee Brown leads the world in "intangibles," Michigan's Daniel Horton leads his point guard rival in assists, steals, shooting percentage and, by all means, free throw accuracy (42 straight at one juncture).

Who's that Illini?

I lettered only two years as a wrestler at Illinois, but the second forever placed me in the team's record books. In 1929, I won Big Ten and NCAA titles at 135 pounds. The latter was a breakthrough for the program. That year, teammate Joe Sapora and I became the first Illini to captured national crowns.

Errors costly to Big Ten title hunt

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – It was a lot to overcome.

Daniel Horton having One of Those Nights. An amped-up Crisler Arena. A Michigan team fighting for its NCAA tournament life.

Illini aren't ready to concede title just yet

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – It's going to take three more wins and a lot of luck.

But don't tell the Illinois basketball team the odds.

Tate: Defense downright despicable

ANN ARBOR, Mich – The college season opened with four nearby coaches riding basketball's hot seat.

Missouri's Quin Snyder and Indiana's Mike Davis were dumped early. Steve Alford, previously a disappointment, has fielded a Big Ten title contender that is bringing Iowa fans back to Carver-Hawkeye Arena and earning him the inside track at his dream job in Indiana.

Karniski signs with pro team

   CHAMPAIGN – Illinois senior defender Christen Karniski has signed to play professionally with FC Indiana of the Women's Premier Soccer League.