Gopher pitchers quiet Illini bats

MINNEAPOLIS – Illinois managed eight hits in 15 innings Saturday in dropping a twi-night doubleheader to Minnesota in Big Ten Conference baseball.

Brad Pautz pitched a two-hit complete game and Matt Brosseau singled in the winning run with one out in the eighth inning as the Gophers edged the Illini 3-2 in the opener.

Illinois doesn't cry wolf

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Craig Tiley knew his Illini meant business when he watched them warm up Saturday morning at the Big Ten tennis tournament.

It wasn't their hitting that got his attention. It was their howling.

Tate: Kruger plan puts Illini on the run

Upbeat basketball is back.

With two intense practices under their belt – in preparation for the May 14 departure to Australia – it's obvious which direction the Fighting Illini cagers are headed.

For starters, they''re looking

Steve Schnur spent the summer of 1995 in a quarterback tussle at Northwestern. That fall, he led the Wildcats to the Rose Bowl.

Schnur spent the summer of '96 as the clearcut No. 1 starter. That fall, he led the Wildcats to the lesser Citrus Bowl.

Foreign tours can spell success

There's a new formula for winning national titles in college basketball these days.

It involves floating on the Dead Sea, riding camels in Jerusalem, parasailing over the Mediterranean and climbing the Eiffel Tower.

Jackson makes Minnesota pay

Minnesota forgot to read the scouting report on T.J. Jackson, especially when the Illini designated hitter plays at Siebert Field in Minneapolis.

If the Gophers had prepared properly, they might have pitched differently to Jackson, who homered in the top of the ninth inning to break a tie and give Illinois a 7-6 Big Ten baseball victory Friday night.

Turner loses last of juco receivers

CHAMPAIGN – Illinois football coach Ron Turner is out of junior college receivers. For now.

The last of four junior college transfer receivers, Terrance Smalls, has left the team. The decision was mutual.

Tate: UI's Journell pitching in when called

The danger in holding your best strikeout pitcher for relief in a short series is that the "right situations" might not present themselves.

A hard-throwing ace like Illini junior Jimmy Journell – 49 whiffs in 312/3 innings – only reaches the mound with the game deadlocked or with his team ahead. Unpredictable as baseball is, Illinois coach Itch Jones runs the risk of seeing Journell languish in the bullpen if oft-shelled starters can't carry the contests into the late innings.

Illini''s rare bird

   ANN ARBOR, Mich.  There won''t be an empty seat in sight this weekend when Mike Kosta takes the court at the Big Ten men''s tennis tournament.

   And it''s not just because he''s from half a mile down the road, either.

Illini insider

News-Gazette staff writer Jeff Huth''s review and preview of University of Illinois sports.