Big Ten

Huskers pass-catchers Westerkamp, Carter likely to miss Oct. 15 game against Hoosiers


Huskers pass-catchers Westerkamp, Carter likely to miss Oct. 15 game against Hoosiers

Nebraska has a bye this week, but that still doesn't sound like it'll be enough time for two of the team's top pass-catchers to heal up from injuries sustained in this past weekend's win over Illinois.

Huskers head coach Mike Riley said during Tuesday's Big Ten coaches teleconference that wide receiver Jordan Westerkamp and tight end Cethan Carter likely won't play in the Oct. 15 game against Indiana.

"I don't think Jordan and Cethan will make it for the next game, but possibly for the game after that," Riley said. "After about a 10-day period, it's going to be how they feel and with what they have if they are able to perform, pain-wise. So it's going to be a little while before we can tell exactly when they might be back."

Westerkamp took a shot to the back during the win over the Illini and ended up going to the hospital as a precaution. Riley only called it "an injury to his back" during his comments Tuesday. Carter suffered an apparent elbow injury in last weekend's game.

"Right now everything is very, very sore and tight, so it's going to be a matter of how quickly it loosens up and how much better he can feel in a certain amount of time," Riley said of Westerkamp. "I think that's going to take some time. We're just glad it wasn't any worse than that, and it appears that he will be back relatively soon."

Being without those two guys would be a big blow for Nebraska, which is still a perfect 5-0 on the season and will take that loss-less record into that game against Indiana. Westerkamp is the team's leading receiver with 13 catches for 228 yards and four touchdowns. Carter has 10 catches on the season for 101 yards and a touchdown.

Riley added that he's "hopeful" wide receiver Alonzo Moore, who sat out the Illinois game with an injury of his own, can return against Indiana. Moore has 12 catches for 310 yards and two touchdowns.

And Devine Ozigbo, who suffered an ankle sprain against Illinois, is also battling an injury. Riley said that Ozigbo won't practice during the team's bye week. Ozigo is second on the team with 76 rushes for 318 yards and four touchdowns.

Nursing all these injuries on the offensive side of the ball, the Huskers can certainly use the week off.

"It appears the bye is coming at a good time for us because we've got a couple players who got hurt in the game, give them a little bit more time to heal up," Riley said. "It feels like if we're going to have a bye, this is a good time for us."

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.