Big Ten

Terps get plenty of big plays but can't finish DJ Durkin's first season with Quick Lane Bowl win


Terps get plenty of big plays but can't finish DJ Durkin's first season with Quick Lane Bowl win

Maryland is still without a bowl victory since 2010.

DJ Durkin’s first season ended in bowl eligibility, but it didn’t end in a postseason win, the Terps falling to Boston College, 36-30, in Monday’s Quick Lane Bowl in Detroit.

Maryland turned the ball over four times but hit enough home-run plays to make this one very competitive.

The Terps got a pair of long touchdown runs from Ty Johnson in the first half — scoring scampers of 62 and 30 yards — but trailed the Eagles 29-13 at the break and 36-13 after the Eagles picked up a Perry Hills fumble for a touchdown on the fifth play of the third quarter.

But two more huge scoring plays got Maryland right back in it. After Boston College’s fumble-recovery touchdown, Hills hit Teldrick Morgan for a 63-yard touchdown pass on the second play of the drive. And after a Boston College three and out, Hills found Levern Jacobs for a 52-yard touchdown pass on the second play of that drive to make it 36-27.

Not five minutes into the second half, the two teams combined for just 13 plays but three touchdowns.

The squads swapped unsuccessful possessions from there, punting often before the Eagles missed a field goal at the start of the fourth quarter. Then football madness took over. The Terps turned the ball over on downs, only to get the ball back three plays later on an interception, taking over at Boston College’s 17-yard line. Maryland got to first and goal at the two-yard line, only to push itself back with penalties. Many plays later, the Terps were back on the doorstep, but Hills fumbled the ball away. Three plays later, though, in the shadow of their own goalposts, the Eagles fumbled the ball right back to the Terps.

But gifted a second chance at a goal-line score, Hills threw three straight incompletions, and Maryland settled for a field goal to make it a six-point game. The Terps had one more possession in the final minutes, but Hills threw three straight incompletions and was sacked on fourth down to end the game.

Despite the bevy of turnovers, Maryland’s offense found relative success against one of the country’s top-10 defenses. The Terps scored 30 points and racked up 357 total yards, though only 128 of them came on the ground. Hills completed just 15 of his 35 passing attempts for 229 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. Johnson rushed 15 times for 159 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Hills, though, accounted for minus 41 rushing yards.

Maryland finished Durkin’s first season as head coach with a 6-7 record. The Terps haven’t won a bowl game since Ralph Friedgen’s final season at the helm of program, a victory in the 2010 Military Bowl.

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.