Big Ten

Hawkeyes build huge lead, hold on for high-scoring win over Purdue

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Hawkeyes build huge lead, hold on for high-scoring win over Purdue

It was hardly your usual Big Ten defensive battle.

Iowa and Purdue put on quite the offensive show Saturday, combining for 84 points and more than 1,000 yards of offense. But those numbers don't tell the whole story as the Hawkeyes jumped all over the Boilermakers from the start of this one, holding a four-touchdown lead at the half and watching it shrink without too much panic en route to a 49-35 win in West Lafayette.

Iowa racked up an astonishing 365 rushing yards, getting 326 of those from just two guys, Akrum Wadley and LeShun Daniels Jr. Wadley went for 170 yards and a touchdown on just 14 carries, while Daniels had 24 carries for 156 yards and a pair of touchdowns. C.J. Beathard completed just 10 passes on the day, but two of those went for touchdowns as he recorded a 140-yard day through the air.

Daniels and Beathard each rushed in for touchdowns in the first quarter, Beathard adding a touchdown toss to Riley McCarron before 15 minutes were gone for a lightning-quick 21-point edge. Daniels made it a 28-0 game with a second-quarter touchdown run before Purdue finally got on the board with the first of David Blough's touchdown passes. Wadley had a massive 75-yard touchdown scamper before the end of the first half.

The second half was all Purdue, but it didn't matter much with the gap what it was at the break. Blough pitched four touchdown passes after halftime, but Iowa countered with another Beathard scoring throw and a 41-yard interception-return touchdown from reigning Thorpe Award winner Desmond King.

Blough threw an eye-popping 60 passes and completed just half of them, but he ended with an impressive yardage total of 458 to go along with his quintet of touchdowns. He also threw an interception.

Iowa racked up 520 total yards, the majority coming on the ground. Purdue ended with 503 total yards, almost all of them coming via the pass. The Boilers had just 46 rushing yards. Purdue had the game's lone turnover, while not even 12 penalties could slow down Iowa.

The Hawkeyes moved to 5-2 with the win. Next up is a game against a top-10 Wisconsin team.

Purdue is 3-3 after the loss and faces off against a top-10 Nebraska team next weekend.

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.