Big Ten

Northwestern finalizes 2017 schedule with games against Nevada, Bowling Green

pat-fitzgerald-0713.png

Northwestern finalizes 2017 schedule with games against Nevada, Bowling Green

Northwestern's schedule for the 2017 football season is set.

The Wildcats announced Wednesday the addition of a pair of non-conference home games against Nevada and Bowling Green, finalizing the 2017 schedule.

Northwestern will take on Nevada on Sept. 2, 2017, opening the season against a team it's seen just twice before. The Cats split their previous two games with the Wolf Pack, losing in Reno in 2006 and winning in Evanston in 2007.

Nevada has reached bowl games in 10 of the last 11 seasons, going 7-6 last season with a win in the Arizona Bowl.

The Cats will be looking for their first win against the Bowling Green Falcons on Sept. 16, 2017, having lost two previous matchups in 2001 (in Evanston) and 2003 (in the Motor City Bowl in Detroit).

Bowling Green has posted double-digit wins in two of the last three seasons, making bowl appearances in eight of the last 13 seasons. Last year, the Falcons were 10-4, falling in the GoDaddy Bowl.

Northwestern's 2017 schedule also features a non-conference road game at Duke and a nine-game Big Ten slate with home games against Penn State, Iowa, Michigan State, Purdue and Minnesota; road games against Wisconsin, Maryland and Nebraska; and a game against Illinois at Soldier Field.

Northwestern running back Jeremy Larkin diagnosed with cervical stenosis, will retire immediately

jeremy_larkin.jpg
USA TODAY

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

anderson.jpg
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.