Big Ten

Matt Painter reports Kendall Stephens will not return to Purdue

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Matt Painter reports Kendall Stephens will not return to Purdue

Kendall Stephens' time at Purdue is officially over.

Boilermakers head coach Matt Painter announced last month that Stephens, a St. Charles East product, had requested a release from his scholarship to pursue a potential transfer but that Stephens was still a member of the team and that the door was open for his return to the program.

That status has changed, though, as Painter told reporters Friday that Stephens is searching for a new school and will not return to Purdue.

"He's committed to finding a new situation for him," Painter said. His quotes were published by the Lafayette Journal Courier. "We wish him the best."

Stephens played a significant role for the Boilers as a freshman and sophomore during the 2013-14 and 2014-15 seasons, averaging 8.0 and 8.7 points per game, respectively. He shot 37 percent and 38.4 percent from 3-point range in those two seasons, averaging better than 20 minutes per game in each.

But this past season was a challenge for Stephens, who after appearing in the team's first 20 games missed significant time while dealing with the death of a childhood friend. Stephens sat out all but four of Purdue's final 15 games of the season, logging just 23 minutes and scoring just three points. He did not see action in the Boilers' final two games of the Big Ten Tournament or in their lone NCAA tournament game.

According to the Journal Courier, Stephens is considering Nevada, San Diego and Tulsa as options for a transfer.

Stephens' confirmed departure from the program adds to the immense roster change that could have Purdue looking like an entirely different team next season. A.J. Hammons, Rapheal Davis and Johnny Hill have moved on following their senior seasons, while Caleb Swanigan and Vince Edwards are exploring the NBA Draft process, which could lead to their departures, as well.

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.