Big Ten

Illini's Jalen Coleman-Lands 'progressing back to basketball activities'


Illini's Jalen Coleman-Lands 'progressing back to basketball activities'

The status of hyped Illinois freshman Jalen Coleman-Lands has been a mystery for some time now, but head coach John Groce offered an update on Wednesday.

"Following Jalen Coleman-Lands' latest evaluation by team physicians, he will begin the process of progressing back to basketball activities," Groce said in an announcement released by the Illini basketball program's Twitter account. "There is no specific timetable for his return. We look forward to him returning to the court once fully healthy."

Groce announced in late July that Coleman-Lands was out indefinitely with a stress fracture in his left leg. The injury sidelined Coleman-Lands, keeping him out of practice and keeping him off the court during the team's European trip last month.

A lack of an update had some worried the injury could be a very serious one. But this is positive news for the Illini, what with their top incoming recruit beginning his road to recovery.

[MORE BIG TEN: Illini finally land point guard recruit in Te'Jon Lucas]

While the lack of a timetable for a return means it's possible Coleman-Lands could miss some significant time, it doesn't seem that he will miss the entirety of his freshman season.

It's been a turbulent offseason for the Illini, who lost senior point guard Tracy Abrams to a torn Achilles' tendon, his second season-ending injury in a row. The team also lost transfer big man Darius Paul, who was dismissed from the program following an arrest during that aforementioned European trip.

Coleman-Lands was Groce's top recruit in a highly touted Class of 2015, ranked the No. 39 player in the nation by Rivals. Many who evaluate recruiting pegged Coleman-Lands as Groce's top recruit since arriving in Champaign.

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.

Northwestern set to play Wisconsin at Wrigley Field in 2020

Northwestern set to play Wisconsin at Wrigley Field in 2020

Weeks will separate a perfect 10-year anniversary where Northwestern will play at Wrigley Field for one of its regular season games in the upcoming years.

Back on Nov. 20, 2010, the Wildcats battled it out with Illinois, known as the “Wrigleyville Classic,” which saw the Illini take a 48-27 win.

Even though it’s still two years out, Northwestern still planned ahead and announced its opponent for its game at Wrigley Field on Nov. 7, 2020, against Big Ten rival Wisconsin.

“Obviously an exciting opportunity for our football program to come back to Wrigley Field, one of the Cathedrals of sporting venues in the world,” Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald said. “When I announced it to our team, they were absolutely ecstatic.”

“The opportunity to play at Wrigley field is unique to us, being Chicago’s Big Ten team, and to have the chance to come down and play in an atmosphere like we did a few years back was a bowl game type atmosphere, and I look forward to this special opportunity.”

This game though will be a little different than it was back in 2010. Both the Wildcats and Illini played toward the west end zone due to a tight squeeze near the right field wall due to box seats that were added down the third base line.

Now, Northwestern and Wisconsin do not have to worry about that problem because the bullpens have since moved to the outfield.

Cubs president of business operations Crane Kenney spoke at a news conference earlier on Tuesday at Wrigley.

“So excited to welcome back Northwestern to Wrigley Field to talk about football again,” Kenney said. “We had an incredible experience with them back in 2010."

Kenney also mentioned new seating is on a temporary platform that can all be removed and the dugout tops can be removed as well, and the field will expand west, to allow for a longer field.

With a sellout crowd in the last go around for the Wildcats, don’t be surprised for another sellout at the Friendly Confines.