Big Ten

Jordan Canzeri, Hawkeyes beat Illini to improve to 6-0

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Jordan Canzeri, Hawkeyes beat Illini to improve to 6-0

A monstrous day for Jordan Canzeri sent the Hawkeyes to a perfect at 6-0.

Canzeri rushed for a crazy 256 yards and scored a pair of touchdowns Saturday to power Iowa to a 29-20 win over visiting Illinois in Iowa City.

The Illini defense, which has played well of late, continued to be significantly better than it has been the past two seasons. But it had no answer for Canzeri and an Iowa offense that’s been among the conference’s best.

The two teams traded early touchdowns, and the Illinois defense stood tall on a pair of first-half goal-line stands, forcing a turnover on downs on the first. That netted nothing, though, for the Illini offense, and the Hawkeyes went on a touchdown drive the next time it had the ball, scoring on C.J. Beathard’s screen-pass to Canzeri. The second goal-to-go stop forced a field goal, and the Illini headed to the break trailing, 16-7.

Illinois’ offense looked like a completely different unit after halftime, though, twice driving into the red zone, though both of those drives resulted in field goals rather than touchdowns, keeping the Illini behind on the scoreboard.

To show how important those missed opportunities were, Iowa answered the second field goal with a 75-yard Canzeri touchdown run on the opening play of the next drive, turning a three-point game into a 10-point game.

Illinois’ offense made what could have been a critical mistake on the opening play of the fourth quarter, as on third-and-one, the Illini ran a double-reverse pass on which Geronimo Allison was intercepted. Iowa didn’t do anything with that, though, and Illinois made it a three-point game once again when Wes Lunt hit Allison for a 53-yard touchdown.

The Illini defense bent but didn’t break, stalling the Hawkeyes in the red zone and forcing them to kick a field goal and keep it a one-possession game. But as soon as Illinois got the ball back, running back Ke’Shawn Vaughn fumbled and turned the ball over, setting up another Iowa field goal that made it a nine-point game.

Canzeri was the offensive star for Iowa. He toted the ball 43 times for his 256 rushing yards, the majority of a 271-yard rushing day for the Hawkeyes. He had one touchdown rush and one touchdown catch. Beathard also had a strong afternoon, throwing for 200 yards and a pair of touchdowns while rushing for an additional 29 yards.

Lunt had a big day for the Illini, throwing for 317 yards and a touchdown. The Hawkeyes held the Illini to a jaw-dropping 46 rushing yards on 24 rushing attempts on the day.

Iowa out-gained Illinois by more than 100 yards, 478-363.

The Hawkeyes improved to a perfect 6-0 with the win and are looking more and more like the team to beat in the Big Ten West each week. The Illini, meanwhile, dropped to 4-2 with the loss and sit at 1-1 in conference play.

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.

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.