Illinois' Michael Finke (43) reacts on the bench in the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against Minnesota at the Big Ten Conference tournament, Wednesday, March 9, 2016, in Indianapolis. Illinois won 85-52.
Michael Conroy/Associated Press
March 09, 2016

Finke, Illinois Cruise By Minnesota 85-52 In Big 10 Tourney

The Illini coasted to an easy victory in Wednesday night's opening game of the tournament.  Champaign native Michael Finke finished with 17 points.  Illinois (14-18) moves on to play No. 5 seed Iowa Thursday. 

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner speaks to reporters in his office at the Illinois State Capitol on Tuesday, March 8.
Seth Perlman/Associated Press
March 08, 2016

Rauner: ‘Outrageous’ The House Is Off Until Next Month

State senators are meeting in Springfield this week.  But the Illinois House is not scheduled to return to the Capitol until April.  On Tuesday, Gov. Bruce Rauner criticized House Speaker Michael Madigan, saying the Democratic leader would rather 'go on vacation.'

U-S Supreme Court JusticeSonia Sotomayor with Law Prof. Robin Kar at the University of Illinois Krannert Center
Niala Boodhoo/Illinois Public Media
March 08, 2016

Supreme Court Justice Speaks At U Of I Campus

A capacity crowd of about two thousand people heard US Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor speak at the University of Illinois Krannert Center Monday night in Urbana. 

New Illini Football Coach Lovie Smith, after taking questions from reporters at The U of I's Bielfeldt Administration Building Monday.
Jeff Bossert/Illinois Public Media
March 07, 2016

Lovie Smith Introduced As New Illini Football Coach

Smith says he expects the team he’s inherited to compete for a Big Ten Championship. The former Chicago Bears and Tampa Bay Buccaners coach said he planned to complete his career at Illinois, after signing a six-year, $21 million contract.  "I don't know what better commitment I can show to everyone that we're going to be here for the long haul," he said.

In this Feb. 12, 2016 photo, Democrat Juliana Stratton talks to residents during a bingo party at the Minnie Ripperton apartments in Chicago.Stratton, is trying to unseat incumbent Democratic state Rep. Ken Dunkin. “
Charles Rex Arbogast/Associates Press
March 07, 2016

Obama Produces Ad For Rep. Dunkin Opponent

President Obama has voiced a commercial asking voters to support Juliana Stratton, Rep. Ken Dunkin's opponent for the Democratic nomination for Illinois' 5th House District.  The race is largely seen as a proxy war between House Speaker Michael Madigan, who's supporting Stratton, and Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner, whose allies are supporting Dunkin.

Lovie Smith and Josh Whitman at the University of Illinois Memorial Stadium.
Josh Whitman/University of Illinois
March 07, 2016

U of I Hires Lovie Smith As New Football Coach

The University of Illinois says former NFL coach Lovie Smith will be named the next football coach at the University of Illinois.  Athletic Director Josh Whitman will annouce the former Chicago Bears coach as the Illini's 25th head coach at a Monday afternoon news conference.

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