Big Ten

Illini's Josh Ferguson 'very, very doubtful' for game vs. Hawkeyes


Illini's Josh Ferguson 'very, very doubtful' for game vs. Hawkeyes

Josh Ferguson will likely miss this week’s game at Iowa.

The Illinois starting running back suffered a shoulder injury early in Saturday’s 14-13 win over Nebraska that knocked him out for the remainder of the contest.

Monday, head coach Bill Cubit said it was unlikely that Ferguson would be active for the game against the Hawkeyes.

“I doubt very much he’ll play,” Cubit said. “I think he’s very, very doubtful.”

[MORE BIG TEN: Collegiate Officiating Consortium admits screw-up in Illini win]

Cubit didn’t have an answer to how long Ferguson will be sidelined, awaiting results of further examination.

“He’s going to see a doctor this afternoon to see exactly (what the problem is),” Cubit said. “It’s a shoulder. So we’ll find out a little bit more. Probably not as encouraged right now.”

Ferguson leads the team with 397 rushing yards on 71 carries and has 12 catches for an additional 78 receiving yards.

His absence could be a big deal against an Iowa defense that held Wisconsin under 100 rushing yards in its 10-6 win on Saturday.

[MORE BIG TEN: Grown-up Illini defense shines in powering comeback win]

But freshman Ke’Shawn Vaughn has played well for the Illini and had a big day against Nebraska, carrying the ball 24 times for 98 yards and posting the highest single-game rushing total for an Illinois true freshman since 2011. No. 3 running back Henry Enyenihi also figures to take on an expanded role with Ferguson sidelined.

“Like I tell our guys, anybody that steps on the field, you’ve got to play like you’re the No. 1. Fortunately Ke’Shawn has been playing really well for us,” Cubit said. “I think it’s the next guy where it’s going to affect. We’ve got to get Henry really ready to go.

“You’ve got to have a plan. This week here, we were trying to put our best players out there, and we figured Ke’Shawn and Josh are two of our best. That thing went out the window after 10 plays. And so you’ve got to adjust.”

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.