Oakwood/A-P senior keeps closing gap

CHRISMAN – If Justin Jones wasn't on the radar screen before Saturday, then he ran prominently into the picture with his performance in the 26th Chrisman Cow Chip Classic cross-country race.

The Oakwood/Armstrong-Potomac senior was the runner-up in the flighted race for No. 1 runners. Throughout the 3-mile race, he kept pace with Effingham St. Anthony's Matt Feldhake, the defending Class A state champion.

A weekly chat with Bob Asmussen

This week's guest: offensive lineman Xavier Fulton.

Holdren sparks Illini in Canada

OTTAWA, Ontario – Steve Holdren came off the bench to score a team-high 15 points and lead Illinois to a 74-72 overtime win against Carleton University in the opening game of the Illini's men's basketball Canadian tour Friday.

The Centennial graduate went 6 for 10 from the floor, including 3 for 5 from behind the arc in his first action in an Illini uniform. Holdren left the game with seven minutes remaining in regulation after spraining his right ankle and didn't return.

With a season under his belt, Williams is all smiles

ST. LOUIS – His face has been plastered all over newspapers and magazines. He is a hit with fans of all ages. You'll find the sophomore's No. 7 Illinois jersey hanging in local retail stores.

So, how big has Juice Williams' head gotten during the summer? How many sizes has his already-large noggin increased? Will he start referring to himself in the third person?

The final word

News and notes from Friday afternoon at the Edward Jones Dome:

Speed read

Sports editor Jim Rossow's take on today's game:

Both teams like Week 1. Missouri has won five consecutive openers, and the UI's streak is at three.

Opening defeat pains Masar, UI

CHAMPAIGN – Illinois senior forward Ella Masar played through the pain.

What hurt worse was the Illini's 3-1 loss against Missouri after Masar staked her team to an early lead Friday night.

Line them up

As the Illinois opener against Missouri approaches, here is football beat writer Bob Asmussen's projected two-deep for the game:

Asmussen: Bailey can't hide allegiance

He doesn't want to answer the obvious question: Who are you rooting for today?

On one hand, Victor Bailey is loyal to the place where he was a star receiver, Missouri. On the other, he is loyal to his wife, former Illini track standout Tonja Buford-Bailey.

Two minutes with: Mike White

Staff writer Bob Asmussen's chat with the former Illini coach: