Big Ten

Big Ten basketball roundup: Hawkeyes crush Shockers, Spartans stay undefeated


Big Ten basketball roundup: Hawkeyes crush Shockers, Spartans stay undefeated

A roundup of Big Ten basketball action from Saturday, Nov. 28, 2015:

Iowa State 84, Illinois 73

After numerous poor showings against weak competition this season, Illinois played well against the No. 4 team in the country. The Illini had a lead on the Cyclones as late as midway through the second half, and it wasn’t until a 10-0 run that Iowa State pulled away with four minutes to play. Illinois actually held Iowa State to just 6-for-25 shooting from 3-point range, a solid feat for a team that's given up tons of 3-pointers this season. Malcolm Hill scored 20 points, and Kendrick Nunn scored 19 points, each hitting four 3-pointers.

Maryland 80, Cleveland State 63

The Terps couldn’t create any separation in the first half until back-to-back Jared Nickens triples gave Maryland a seven-point lead, but the edge was just four at the half. The Terps opened the second half with an 8-0 run, and the lead stayed at double digits for most of the rest of the game, climbing as high as 21 in the final minutes. Maryland shot 58 percent from the field, getting 17 points from Robert Carter, 16 points from Nickens and 15 points from Diamond Stone.

Nebraska 82, Tennessee 71

It was a one-point Tennessee lead with about five and a half minutes to play in the first half when Nebraska went on a 13-1 run to race out to a double-digit lead, which was down to eight at the half. The Huskers started the second half on a 17-4 run to grow the edge to 21. The Vols couldn’t get the deficit lower than nine. Nebraska shot 60 percent from the field in the second half and had a 46-30 rebounding edge on the game. Five Nebraska players scored in double figures, led by the 18 of Tai Webster and the double-double of Jake Hammond.

[MORE BIG TEN: Scottie Lindsey scores 26 as Northwestern crushes New Orleans]

Northwestern 90, New Orleans 63

Northwestern crushed visiting New Orleans, led by the career-high 26 points of Scottie Lindsey, who hit six 3-pointers, half of the 12 long balls the Cats hit on the evening. Northwestern had runs of 13-0 and 8-0 in the first half and led by as many as 33 in the second half. The Cats shot 55.2 percent from the field in the game. Tre Demps had 16 points, while Bryant McIntosh had 13 points and Alex Olah blocked six shots.

Penn State 62, Bucknell 58

It was a real tight game all the way through, the teams trading modest leads for almost the entirety. Bucknell went up eight around the five-and-a-half-minute mark thanks to a 7-0 spurt, but Penn State answered with seven in a row. Jordan Dickerson’s layup with 1:16 left tied the game at 58, and Payton Banks’ 3-pointer with 23 seconds to play proved the game-winning bucket as Bucknell missed a 3 at the other end. Bucknell shot just 29.8 percent from the field. Brandon Taylor had a double-double with 19 points and 11 rebounds.

Purdue 77, Lehigh 55

Purdue created some first-half separation with a 12-4 run and led by 10 at the break. A 10-2 run to open the second half made it an 18-point lead, and a late 15-6 run capped the runaway. The Boilers held Lehigh to just 29.6-percent shooting, grabbed 50 rebounds and blocked seven shots. Isaac Haas had a monster game, scoring 24 points. Caleb Swanigan and Vince Edwards combined for 22 rebounds. Johnny Hill had 13 points, and P.J. Thompson had 10.

[SHOP BIG TEN: Get your Hawkeyes gear right here]

A roundup of Big Ten basketball action from Sunday, Nov. 29, 2015:

Iowa 84, Wichita State 61

The Hawkeyes had a monster first half, spurred mainly by 15-2 and 11-2 runs in the opening 20 minutes, and led by 19 at the break. They opened the second half on an 11-0 run to push the lead all the way to 30 and ended up winning by 23. Iowa shot 53.8 percent from the field and made 20 free throws. Four Hawkeyes scored in double figures, led by Jarrod Uthoff’s 22 points. He also had seven rebounds and five blocks. Adam Woodbury had 15, Mike Resell had 14 and Peter Jok scored 12 points.

Michigan State 77, Providence 64

Closely contested most of the way, this one had the feel of an NCAA tournament game. The game-changing stretch came in the game’s final seven minutes. A Bryan Forbes bucket was answered by a Providence 3 that made it a four-point game with six and a half minutes to go. From there, Michigan State turned on the jets, scoring the next six points to take a small lead, and a go-ahead Providence 3 was waved off on review, deemed a shot-clock violation instead. Matt McQuaid hit a huge 3 at the other end to make it a five-point game, and the Spartans turned it all into a 24-7 run to close the game. Michigan State had four players in double figures: Forbes had 18 with three made 3s, Denzel Valentine had 17 on a bad shooting night, and Eron Harris and Deyonta Davis each had 12 points in big performances off the bench.

Oklahoma 65, Wisconsin 48

Nigel Hayes hit a 3 to open the scoring, but that was the last positive thing that happened for the Badgers as the Sooners went on a 15-0 run from there. The first half was a nightmare for Wisconsin, which scored just 19 points on 6-for-31 shooting, including just 2-for-15 inside the 3-point line. The second half was much more closely contested, but it didn’t make much difference. The Badgers shot 23.5 percent on the game. Hayes finished with a double-double, scoring 20 points and grabbing 11 rebounds.

Northwestern running back Jeremy Larkin diagnosed with cervical stenosis, will retire immediately


Northwestern running back Jeremy Larkin diagnosed with cervical stenosis, will retire immediately

Tough news out of Evanston this morning: Northwestern announced that running back Jeremy Larkin will retire immediately after being diagnosed with cervical stenosis.

Cervical stenois is the narrowing of the spinal canal in one's neck, according to Mayo Clinic. Larkin's condition is thankfully not life-threatening, though it does prevent him from continuing to participate in the game of football. 

"Football has been a lifelong passion and it has been a process to reconcile the fact I won't be on that field again, given I've played this game since I was five years old," Larkin said.

"I'm extremely appreciative of the Northwestern sports medicine and athletic training staffs for uncovering this condition, and for my coaches and the medical staff for always putting my health first.

"I came to this University to engage at the absolute highest level on the field and in the classroom, and I'm grateful for the opportunity to continue one of those while supporting my teammates from the sideline." 

Head Coach Pat Fitzgerald called the news "heartbreaking."

"This is heartbreaking because I see every day how much Jeremy loves the game, loves his teammates, and loves to compete," Fitzgerald said in a statement. "But this is the absolute best possible outcome for him.

"The discovery of this condition allowed Jeremy and his family to make an informed decision for his long-term health and well-being. For those of us who have known Jeremy Larkin since his high school days, his future is exceptionally bright. I can't wait to see the impact he makes in our world."

Larkin is a sophomore from Cincinnati. He finishes his Northwestern career with 156 carries for 849 yards and 10 rushing touchdowns.

Former Illini champion Kevin Anderson upsets Roger Federer in Wimbledon quarterfinal


Former Illini champion Kevin Anderson upsets Roger Federer in Wimbledon quarterfinal

Former University of Illinois tennis star Kevin Anderson completed a marathon upset against an all-time great on the highest stage of professional tennis.

Anderson came back from two sets down to beat Roger Federer in Wimbledon’s quarterfinals 2-6, 6-7, 7-6, 6-4, 13-11 on Wednesday morning. He will play in the semifinals of the tournament for the first time in his career.

As a native of South Africa, Anderson played three seasons with the Fighting Illini and won the NCAA doubles championship during the 2005-06 season as a sophomore. The 32-year-old was a three-time All-American in singles at Illinois.

Now, as the eighth ranked singles player on the ATP World Tour, Anderson is a force to be reckoned with at the professional level. He made it all the way to the US Open final in 2017.

The former Illini star will look to keep his recent success going when he represents Illinois in the semifinals of Wimbledon this Friday.