Archive for May 2017

Throwback Thursday: Mike Scifres, WIU punter & kicker

Throwback Thursday:  Mike Scifres, WIU punter & kicker
Former WIU head coach Randy Ball remembers the first time he laid eyes of Mike Scifres. Or he at least thought he did. “I went to St. Louis to pick up Mike and his mother at the airport,” said Ball, now a scout for the Kansas City Chiefs. “He was supposed to be 6-2 or... Read more »

Record-setting running back headlines EIU Hall of Fame class inductees

Record-setting running back headlines EIU Hall of Fame class inductees
Productive standout J.R. Taylor headlines the latest list of inductees for Eastern Illinois University’s Athletic Hall of Fame. According to a story on the EIU website, “Taylor was one of the most dominant running backs in Eastern Illinois football history during a successful time in Panther football history.” Taylor played at EIU from 1999-2002. The... Read more »

Throwback Thursday: Rick Johnson, SIU quarterback

Throwback Thursday:  Rick Johnson, SIU quarterback
When you wind up breaking the Southern Illinois career passing record held by the legendary Jim Hart and lead your team to the national championship, how many people would guess you nearly gave it all up and walked away before it began? Yet, that’s precisely what happened to Rick Johnson. Johnson came from a long... Read more »
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SIU Salukis Notebook: Cardinals adding former SIU star to Ring of Honor

SIU Salukis Notebook:  Cardinals adding former SIU star to Ring of Honor
Former Southern Illinois quarterback and athletic director Jim Hart will have his name added to the Cardinals Ring of Honor this fall, according to the NFL franchise. Hart will become the 17th member to be recognized in this fashion, according to the official Arizona Cardinals’ release. The Evanston native left SIU as the Salukis’ all-time... Read more »

Throwback Thursday: Estus Hood, ISU defensive back

Throwback Thursday:  Estus Hood, ISU defensive back
If you attend an Illinois State football game, don’t look for someone wearing No. 8 on the field. It has long since been retired to mark the excellence of former Redbird defensive back Estus Hood. In fact, just three ISU jerseys have been granted the honor. The other two were worn by Dennis Nelson (72)... Read more »

Former Redbird hoping spring league leads to NFL tryout

Former Redbird hoping spring league leads to NFL tryout
If spring truly is eternal, then former Illinois State Redbird defensive back Josh Burch has renewed hope of keeping his professional football dreams alive. Burch, who played for ISU from 2012-15, recently participated in The Spring League, which according to its website “was created in early 2016 to serve as an instructional league and developmental platform... Read more »
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Throwback Thursday: Ryan Pace, EIU defensive lineman & Bears' general manager

Throwback Thursday:  Ryan Pace, EIU defensive lineman & Bears' general manager
Football fans know Ryan Pace as the Bears’ general manager who sent shock waves through the recent NFL Draft by trading up one spot to snag quarterback Mitchell Trubisky. But how well do fans know Pace, born in 1977, the year Walter Payton was the NFL’s Most Valuable Player and Man of the Year? Friday... Read more »

EIU Notebook: New faces deliver in spring, fresh look to old rivalry next fall

EIU Notebook:  New faces deliver in spring, fresh look to old rivalry next fall
Perhaps Eastern Illinois coaches and fans got a glimpse of some new faces, names and numbers in the Panthers’ recent spring game that will ultimately contribute to regular season success next fall. Late last season soon-to-be-graduating senior offensive lineman Evan Kanz was asked about some of EIU’s rising stars of the future. One of the... Read more »

WIU Notebook: Team captains, future opponents & a renovated locker room

WIU Notebook:  Team captains, future opponents & a renovated locker room
Western Illinois head coach Charlie Fisher took to the microphone at the annual spring game to offer thanks to fans and supporters as well as to make several announcements. He also introduced the Leatherneck team captains for the upcoming season. The four captains were voted on by the team and coaching staff. Repeating as captains... Read more »
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Illinois State coach Spack a full-speed auto racing 'nut'

Illinois State coach Spack a full-speed auto racing 'nut'
The following is the final installment in a series of stories focusing on the four Illinois FCS football coaches and their interests outside of their sport. Today’s installment of “For the Love Beyond the Game” is about Illinois State head coach Brock Spack and his passion for auto racing. May is perhaps the quietest month... Read more »