Big Ten

Penn State hopes to bolster O-line with addition of Stanford transfer Kevin Reihner

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Penn State hopes to bolster O-line with addition of Stanford transfer Kevin Reihner

The Nittany Lions' offensive line is getting a boost in the form of former Stanford O-lineman Kevin Reihner.

Reihner is a graduate transfer and is eligible to play immediately.

Reiner played in 10 games in his three-year career with the Cardinal, including six a season ago. He's also a native of Scranton and is returning close to home. His father played offensive line for Penn State in the 1970s.

[MORE BIG TEN: Braxton Miller told Buckeyes AD he's staying at Ohio State]

"We are excited to have Kevin join our family," Penn State head coach James Franklin said in the team's announcement. "He comes to us with great experience at the collegiate level and has the opportunity to make an immediate impact for us. It's awesome that Kevin can return home to Pennsylvania to close out his college career."

The "immediate impact" line could be very true, as Penn State had plenty of problems along the offensive line a season ago.

The Lions' running game could never really get moving, averaging a Big Ten-worst 101.9 yards a game, and quarterback Christian Hackenberg was under constant pressure as the Lions allowed 44 sacks. Penn State had the lowest scoring offense in the conference, averaging just 20.6 points per game.

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

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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

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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.