Big Ten

Big Ten poll update: Win over Wisconsin doesn't get Northwestern back in AP top 25

Big Ten poll update: Win over Wisconsin doesn't get Northwestern back in AP top 25

Northwestern went on the road and beat the No. 7 team in the country. But apparently that wasn't enough to get the Wildcats back into the AP top-25 rankings.

Chris Collins' team might have scored the biggest win in program history when it beat Wisconsin on Sunday night in Madison, but it still resides in the "others receiving votes" category, checking in as the de facto No. 28 team in the country when the new AP poll was released Monday.

That likely stems from an ugly home loss to Illinois from earlier last week. The Fighting Illini are the second-worst team in the Big Ten, and losing to them at home — even without leading scorer Scottie Lindsey — was likely enough in the minds of many voters to keep the Cats from reclaiming a spot in the top 25.

Regardless, Northwestern, which seemingly guaranteed its inclusion in the NCAA tournament with Sunday's win, will have another opportunity to impress this week. The Cats take on the 23rd-ranked Maryland Terrapins on Wednesday in Evanston.

Aforementioned Wisconsin dropped in the rankings but not drastically, falling from No. 7 to No. 11 after getting an eight-game win streak snapped by Northwestern.

Purdue, which beat Indiana last week in Bloomington, stayed at No. 16.

Maryland, which lost to Penn State and beat Ohio State. dropped from No. 21 to No. 23.

Over in the coaches poll, Wisconsin dropped five spots from No. 5 to No. 10, Purdue climbed two spots from No. 18 to No. 16 and Maryland dropped two spots from No. 22 to No. 24. Northwestern was in the "others receiving votes" category in this poll, too, the de facto No. 27 team in the country.

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

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USA TODAY

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

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USA TODAY

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.