Jim Rossow

Jim Rossow

Top of the morning, Sept. 16, 2015

At 1 p.m. Friday, the Clinton Police Department will introduce the new face of its K9 Unit, a black labrador retriever named Charlie. Not that she needs a press conference to feel special.

"She's a celebrity around here every day and quite the diva," Chief Ben Lowers said.

Top of the morning, Sept. 15, 2015

Nicole Powell-Kibler was "just cruising around" when she liked us on Facebook, becoming the 10,000th to do so.

It's our latest social media milestone. Coming next: 20,000 followers on Twitter (19,873 as of Monday night).

Top of the morning, Sept. 13, 2015

Tuscola high schooler Emma Sementi's summer included a handshake and hug with the president of the United States.

But that wasn't the best part of her visit with Barack Obama inside the White House.

"He did surprisingly know where Tuscola was at," the senior said. "He was the only person I met (there) that knew where Tuscola was."

Top of the morning, Sept. 12, 2015

Shin Dian

That's "lightning" in Mandarin Chinese.

I know this because David He and Bruce Lu called last week's weather-delayed Illini opener at Memorial Stadium. The UI students picked a strange game to make their history-making broadcast debut but had fun nonetheless.

Top of the morning, Sept. 10, 2015

Tuesday's rainfall ended a spell of hot weather.

Sunday will go down as the hottest day of the year (94 degrees).


"The last sustained heat wave of the year," said Professor Jeff Frame, the University of Illinois' weather junkie. As if to prove his point, he tweeted a photo of snowblowers outside a big-box store on Monday.

Top of the morning, Sept. 9, 2015

ANN WILDMAN swears most of her photos don't turn out so great.

"I'll take 300 at a game and half of them turn out bad and blurry," Wildman said.

But one from Saturday had a lot of people talking Tuesday: the young son of Sages coach Cully Welter — Trey — interacting with official Jason Foy before Monticello's game at Macomb (above).

IHSA's response to ref attack spotlights Monticello gesture

As administrators in Texas investigate an attack on a football official by two high school players, the IHSA today used Monticello High as an example of good sports in action.

Top of the morning, Sept. 8, 2015

With Labor Day in the rearview mirror, we turn our focus to ... Halloween, which is 52 days away. But don't wait that long to get your pumpkin.

Top of the morning, Sept. 6, 2015

More on this weekend's football fiasco on campus ...

— UI music prof Barrington Coleman didn't make it to Saturday's makeup. But ask him about the last time Illinois had to postpone a game — the week of Sept. 11, 2001 — and his voice cracks.

"A day I'll never forget," he said Saturday morning.

Top of the morning, Sept. 5, 2015

Meet Brian Cordes. He's 35, married to Joy and father to Hazel. He likes cars, teaching and Michigan sports.

He also eats cheese like no one's business.

"I hope to come in under four minutes this year," he said.