A year after Illini kicker James McCourt’s 39-yard field goal stunned Wisconsin on homecoming, LAS students were invited to Memorial Stadium to try their luck at replicating the feat. Same spot, same direction, even same announcer.

Chicago-born, Michigan-raised UI Dance Head Jan Erkert takes us on a virtual tour of her favorite places and spaces — from Erlanger House (where her future husband popped the question) to the basketball courts at Illini Grove (aka the department's makeshift dance floor this fall).

We asked Scott Dochterman, Iowa beat writer at The Athletic, for his thoughts on the Hawkeyes going into Saturday’s Illinois-Iowa game at Memorial Stadium in Champaign:

A year after Illini kicker James McCourt’s 39-yard field goal stunned Wisconsin on homecoming, LAS students were invited to Memorial Stadium to try their luck at replicating the feat. Same spot, same direction, even same announcer.

Seven-day positivity rates for area counties: Champaign 6.5%, Piatt 8.3, Ford 9.3, Iroquois 12.6, Douglas 14.3, Vermilion 15.2. ... Gov. J.B. Pritzker: As of Tuesday afternoon, the state expects a first vaccine shipment of 109,000 doses, enough for 54,500 people, in the coming days. Healthcare workers will be first priority, followed by residents and staff at long-term care facilities.

Many small-town Christmas celebrations have been scaled back due to the pandemic. Santa, however, is still making the rounds thanks to helpful fire departments.

Champaign County's 58th death of the pandemic is among 57 reported statewide Sunday. ... 12 of 70 COVID patients hospitalized at Carle Urbana in ICU. ... Region 6 seven-day positivity rate up slightly (11.9 to 12.0%). Of 21 counties in region, Fayette has highest rate (24.8%), Champaign lowest (6.9%, without UI tests factored in).

Vermilion County adds 106 cases, Piatt County 49. ... Region 6’s seven-day positivity rate — 14.6% eight days ago — is now 11.9%. … Of 29 Champaign County ZIP codes, only two see their active case counts grow Saturday, both just slightly — Mahomet (+3, 88 now active) and Broadlands (+1, 3). … Rantoul’s active total shrinks by 25 (to 74) on a day that active cases are down 120 countywide.

We asked Cleveland.com beat writer and Salt Fork alum Nathan Baird for his thoughts on the Buckeyes going into Saturday’s Illinois-Ohio State game at Memorial Stadium.

For more than a decade, the highly-successful Parkland College volleyball team has taken time around Thanksgiving to give back to the community.

Seven-day rates decline in Champaign County (8.9 to 8.6%), Douglas (13.0 to 11.8), Piatt (11.8 to 11.5), Region 6 (13.1 to 12.7), state (10.6 to 10.3). ... 12 of the 71 COVID patients at Carle’s hospital in Urbana are in ICU. ... 19 Champaign County residents hospitalized with COVID. ... UI campus seven-day rate remains 0.3%.

Among the lives lost: two men in their 80s and two men in their 90s in Champaign County; a woman in her 90s and man in his 70s in Vermilion County. For the pandemic, Champaign County has reported 52 coronavirus-related deaths, Vermilion 36. ... Piatt County reports 63 new cases over four days, 23 of them in Monticello. ... Wednesday's new daily case totals: 136 in Champaign County, 134 in Vermilion, 13 on UI campus, 9 in Ford.

When real-estate agent Debby Auble began cooking meals in March for elderly people with various dietary restrictions, she thought she may be doing it for a few weeks. Eight months into the COVID-19 pandemic, she’s still at it.

Department of Public Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike says that the latest word from federal officials is that the first shipment may contain only about 80,000 doses, or one-fifth of the 400,000 doses that state officials were expecting as recently as last week.

Since we don’t publish a print edition on Thanksgiving, more than a pound of Black Friday advertisements (three insert packages) will be included in Wednesday’s News-Gazette.

Pritzker: 'Unless the Republican Senate gets a stimulus bill moving in December, Republicans will be putting a big lump of coal in the Christmas stockings of a whole lot of American families.' ... Ford County reports 69 new cases between Nov. 19-23. ... For third straight day, Region 6's seven-day rate decreased — from 14.0 to 13.7 percent.

Dr. Ngozi Ezike said the hospital workers set to receive the vaccine in the first rounds include staff who are not health care professionals, such as the cleaning and food staff: “A lot of those people in those jobs are our Black and Brown communities and so we are going to make sure that they are included in that first phase 1a."

Douglas County: Man in 80s becomes 15th to lose life to COVID-19. ... Champaign County: All but 3 of 27 ZIP codes (Broadlands, Longview, Sadorus) see rise in daily case counts. ... Region 6: 7-day positivity rate drops for second straight day, from 14.5% to 14.0%. ... Vermilion County: 54 new cases; 27 COVID-positive county residents hospitalized. ... Sunday state report: 92,437 tests, 10,012 cases, 76 fatalities, 11.3% seven-day rate.