The school year might be winding down, but several Illinois teams are still

making headlines. Staff writer Scott Richey

has the latest update:

Men’s golfIllinois went low in the opening round of the NCAA regional at Eagle Eye Golf Club on Monday in Bath, Mich. Just not as low as Georgia. The Illini head into Tuesday’s second round tied with Michigan State, trailing the Bulldogs by six strokes after Matthis Besard and Adrien Dumont de Chassart both shot 4-under 67s to finish the first round among the top 10 individuals. Dumont de Chassart’s birdie-birdie-eagle finish helped pull Illinois into the No. 2 spot at 12-under as a team.

Track and fieldOlivia Howell defended her 1,500-meter title and added a runner-up finish in the 5,000-meter run to lead the Illinois women to an eighth-place finish at the Big Ten outdoor championships on Sunday weekend in Bloomington, Ind. Tori Thomas added a second-place finish in the pole vault for the Illini women. The Illinois men’s team finished ninth with the 1,600-meter relay team of Jason Thormo, Kashief King, Tadeas Placek and Robert Williams placing second.

FootballThree defensive backs selected in this year’s NFL draft made rebuilding the Illinois secondary a priority this offseason. That continued Sunday with a commitment from Florida International transfer Demetrius Hill. The 6-foot-2, 190-pound safety out of Miami was a FWAA Freshman All-American in 2022 after starting all 12 games for the hometown Golden Panthers and finishing his debut redshirt freshman season with 95 tackles, 31/2 tackles for loss and three forced fumbles.

Women’s basketball

Makira Cook is one step closer to adding Team USA to her résumé. The Illinois guard was named one of five finalists for the four remaining roster spots for the 2023 AmeriCup team. Cook will return to Colorado Springs, Colo., when the team’s training camp begins June 22 to try and make the final roster. Competing with Cook for those final roster spots will be Texas A&M’s Janiah Barker, Columbia’s Abbey Hsu, Oregon’s Chance Gray and LSU’s Aneesah Morrow.

BaseballIllinois is in the Big Ten tournament field — for now — despite losing two of three games at Rutgers this past weekend, including a 3-0 shutout on Sunday. A quirk in the Illini’s schedule meant that was their final Big Ten series, while the rest of the league still has one conference series each. Series sweeps by Michigan State and Purdue at home this weekend against Indiana and Nebraska, respectively, would push Illinois (23-24, 12-12 Big Ten) out of the top eight and forestall a trip to Omaha, Neb., for the Big Ten tournament.

Scott Richey is a reporter covering college basketball at The News-Gazette. His email is, and you can follow him on Twitter (@srrichey).

College/Prep Sports Reporter

Scott Richey is a reporter covering college basketball at The News-Gazette. His email is, and you can follow him on Twitter (@srrichey).