UI tennis team escapes upset

The Illinois tennis team long has prided itself on its prowess in doubles.

On Wednesday, doubles proved to be the difference as the top-ranked Illini escaped with a 4-3 victory against No. 17 Kentucky at Lexington, Ky.

Head gets fine, public service for traffic offenses

URBANA – University of Illinois basketball player Luther Head was ordered to perform 150 hours of public service and pay a hefty fine after pleading guilty Wednesday to driving under suspension and driving without proof of insurance.

Head, 21, of Chicago, but who lives in Savoy, entered the pleas before Champaign County Judge Jeff Ford, who pointedly reminded him that given his celebrity, it probably wouldn''t be a good idea to drive since police know his face.

Illini Insider

News-Gazette staff writer Jeff Huth and preview of Illini sports:

Illini split softball doubleheader

Illinois had 12 hits in a 7-2 Game 1 win, but host Bradley came back with a 4-1 victory in the second game at Peoria.

Tate: Lethargic Illini need wakeup call

What we need is a raging controversy, a bench-clearing brawl ... anything to awaken a lethargic baseball team and put the Fight in Fighting Illini.

Itch Jones appears to have a sound team with three versatile outfielders, an established pair in Chad Frk and Eric Eymann on the left side of the infield, and Ontario''s Player of the Year catching (Chris Robinson bombed his fourth homer in a week Tuesday night).

NCAA crystal ball doesn''t show much ... other than my Top 25

Last year, this was so easy.

Syracuse hadn''t even finished snipping the nets in New Orleans before Connecticut became the clear-cut favorite to claim college basketball''s top prize in 2004.

Sometimes these things work out just like they''re supposed to.

Ex-Illini joins Hall of Fame

Former Illini Jerry Colangelo, chairman of the Phoenix Suns, was one of six former players, coaches and team executives announced Monday as the newest members of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mass.

Joining him are former college and pro star Clyde Drexler; Lynette Woodard, an Olympic gold medalist and the first female Harlem Globetrotter; coach Bill Sharman, already in the Hall as a player; the late Maurice Stokes, the 1956 NBA Rookie of the Year; and Drazen Dalipagic, an international star for Yugoslavia.

UI fullbacks catching on

CHAMPAIGN – The oldest guy in the group has been on campus two years. One is in his second semester. The other has been at Illinois since January.

The Illinois fullback position, capably handled for three years by Carey Davis, is now in the pass-catching mitts of sophomore Jason Davis and freshmen Brian Grzelakowski and Brock Bolen.

Tate: Tennis team makes quite a racket

EVANSTON – Like old man river, the Illini tennis streak "just keeps rollin'' along."

It reached 50 Sunday, half a hundred, three more than Oklahoma''s football run in the 1950s, six short of Joe DiMaggio, not yet close to UCLA''s 88-game basketball splurge under John Wooden. Wisconsin became No. 49 Saturday, and Northwestern was Sunday''s victim, both by 7-0 margins.

Rogers, Spring claim individual titles; five Illlini become All-Americans

CHAMPAIGN – Sunday''s individual event finals at the NCAA Men''s Gymnastics Championships represented a chance for the Illini to go out in glory at the Assembly Hall.

But Illinois coach Yoshi Hayasaki couldn''t have imagined this type of glory.