Big Ten

Michigan announces uniform switch from adidas to Nike


Michigan announces uniform switch from adidas to Nike

In 13 months, Michigan won't exactly be magically transformed into the Oregon of the Midwest, but there will be changes coming to the uniforms in Ann Arbor.

Michigan announced Monday that Nike will be taking over as the team's equipment provider on Aug. 1, 2016, in a deal that will span the next decade.

The Wolverines have been wearing adidas duds since 2007, but this year will be the grand finale of that partnership.

"After careful consideration, the right partner for the University of Michigan was Nike," interim athletics director Jim Hackett said in the school's announcement. "This decision, this partnership is about more than Michigan athletics. At the core, it is about our university community, and it is about two great names reuniting for an opportunity that speaks to more than uniforms and apparel. Nike is a recognized leader in its field when it comes to product innovation, and we look forward to future collaboration."

[MORE BIG TEN: PETA says Michigan players who owned wallaby 'dropped the ball']

It's that last bit that will likely be of the most future interest. Nike has grabbed tons of headlines for its radical uniform designs across college football but most famously with Oregon.

That, of course, doesn't mean that Michigan's football unis will look much different under the new Nike partnership. Schools like Michigan that wear a timeless look rarely see a dramatic overhaul. Take (former) rival Notre Dame, which teamed with Under Armour beginning last season. The Irish's regular look didn't change much.

Also of note in Monday's announcement was the fact that the Michigan men's and women's basketball programs will be outfitted with Jordan Brand apparel. So expect to see the Michael Jordan silhouette in maize and blue soon.

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.