Saturday’s forecast in Minneapolis calls for temperatures in the 20s, which comes as good news for University of Illinois running partners Josh Whitman (right) and Derrick Burson.
“Positively balmy!” Whitman said. “The bigger concern might be finding solid footing free of ice and snow, but I’m confident we’ll get it in.”
Whitman and Burson have made it a tradition to hoof it 10 miles together while on the road with Illinois basketball. Last Friday’s visit to Nebraska — where it was minus-2 — nearly did them in, as shown clearly in the frozen-faced selfie Whitman tweeted.
There is a fine line between committed and crazy. My guy @DerrickBurson and I kept up our @IlliniMBB road game tradition this morning, logging 10 miles in sub-zero temps. Our part is done (hello, superstitious)...the rest is up to you, fellas! #ItsOnlyCrazyIfItDoesntWork 🔷🔶🤜 pic.twitter.com/OXNI2GNwwP— Josh Whitman (@IlliniAD) February 12, 2021
“Tradition is tradition,” Whitman said. “We have run in some cold weather previously, but this certainly took it to a new level. Illini are tough!”
Saturday’s jog ahead of a 2:30 p.m. tipoff at Minnesota should be a breeze for the athletic director and men’s basketball sports information director. In other words, no icicle beards afterward.
“I’ve been really surprised by the traffic that tweet caused,” Whitman said. “But the best comment probably came from my wife, Hope, because she knows how committed (crazy?) Derrick and I are. She wasn’t surprised in the least. Her roll of the eyes said a lot.”