Tate: Competition will keep UI on the run

Casting football into the mind''s back regions, win-hungry Illinoisans will consume a promising basketball team with deep-throated emotion at Saturday night''s Orange and Blue scrimmage.

Illini Nation just can''t wait. But maybe it should. Wait, that is. Just a little longer. Until we know more.

New poll, same spot for Illinois

Bruce Weber is in, Bill Self and Brian Cook are out, and yet not much has changed with Illinois basketball.

At least the nation''s coaches don''t think so.

Tabon comfortable in first Assembly Hall foray

CHAMPAIGN – Illinois freshman Audrey Tabon would like to work for National Geographic one day, exploring cultures across the globe.

Lately, she''s spent much of her time exploring the inside of the Ubben Basketball Complex.

Illinois football practice report

With Lonnie Hurst out for the season and Kelvin Hayden missing against Iowa, Eric McGoey is working at receiver after spending most of the year at safety.

"As far as going back to receiver, I''m fine," McGoey said. "I''ve been here too long. I don''t forget it.

Livingston will relish quiet time after announcing

PEORIA – Part of Shaun Livingston will be happy just to end it.

When the Peoria Central star announces his college choice – probably in the middle of next week – it will mark the end of a long recruiting race, and, if nothing else, a dip in Livingston''s cellphone bill.

Illini Insider

News-Gazette staff writer Jeff Huth''s weekly review and preview of Illinois sports:

Illinois Football Practice Report


Illinois center Duke Preston still has a home to return to for Christmas break.

Illinois Men''s Basketball Practice Report


Illinois had a controlled scrimmage – complete with referees – to close Wednesday''s practice, a brief preview of Saturday''s Orange and Blue game.

Squad among elite

Illini coach Yoshi Hayasaki''s men''s gymnastics squad was ranked third in the GymInfo preseason coaches'' poll that was released Wednesday.

The Illini were ranked third in last season''s preseason poll, and it''s the squad''s third consecutive year in the Top 5 to start a season.

Calkins, Martin advance

Michael Calkins and Chris Martin defeated NotreDame''s Luis Haddock and Ryan Keckley 8-2 in the finals of the ITAMidwest Regional tournament Tuesday in East Lansing, Mich.

The duo earned a berth in the National Indoor Championships, which will be Nov. 6-9 in Ann Arbor, Mich.