Big Ten

Report: Chris Ash makes Houston WR coach Drew Mehringer new Rutgers OC

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Report: Chris Ash makes Houston WR coach Drew Mehringer new Rutgers OC

Chris Ash is bringing even more of an Ohio State flavor to Rutgers.

The Scarlet Knights' new head coach is bringing in another former Buckeyes assistant, reportedly tabbing Houston wide receivers coach Drew Mehringer to be his offensive coordinator, according to a report from Sports Illustrated's Pete Thamel.

Mehringer, just 28 years old, worked as a graduate assistant under Urban Meyer in 2013 before heading to FCS program James Madison as the co-offensive coordinator, and after a strong year there in 2014, he joined former Ohio State offensive coordinator Tom Herman at Houston. The Cougars had a terrific first season under Herman, posting a 12-1 record, winning the American Athletic Conference championship and earning a spot in the Peach Bowl.

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Herman, who is one of the hottest names in the college football coaching profession right now, was described in Thamel's report as Mehringer's "long-time mentor." Mehringer played quarterback at Rice when Herman was the offensive coordinator, and Mehringer joined Herman as a graduate assistant at coaching stops at Iowa State and Ohio State.

In his one season as co-offensive coordinator at James Madison, Mehringer's offense put up some pretty gaudy numbers, ranking 10th in the FCS in total offense, averaging 484.6 yards per game.

“Drew is a rising star in the profession,” Ash told Thamel. “He is a very intelligent guy with a creative offensive mind. He’s been around explosive offenses and winning programs. He will do a great job caring for and developing our players.”

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.