Big Ten lunch links: Illini finalize Cincinnati series
Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg
Spring practice in the Big Ten kicks off in less than two weeks. Excited yet?
- Minnesota received the funding for its new on-campus facility just in the nick of time, and construction for TCF Bank Stadium remains on track despite the financial crisis, Brian Murphy writes in the St. Paul Pioneer Press.
"On the University of Minnesota campus, workers have completed 80 percent of TCF Bank Stadium and are on schedule to finish the $288 million project by early August. More heavy lifting remains on the sales front, however. Terms of the state's financing deal require the university to cover 45 percent of the costs from donations, corporate sponsorships, parking revenues and student fees."
- Illinois' contract for a two-game series against Cincinnati has been finalized, and the Illini will head to Nippert Stadium on Nov. 28, Bob Asmussen writes in The (Champaign) News-Gazette. Cincinnati returns the game in 2013. Also, Illini co-defensive coordinator Dan Disch turned down more money from South Florida to stay in Champaign.
- In case you missed it from earlier today, Ohio State won't follow the national trend of paying ridiculously high salaries for assistant football coaches, Tim May writes in The Columbus Dispatch.
- Iowa might end up with two scholarship kickers for 2009, The Gazette's Marc Morehouse writes in his blog.
- After winning a Big Ten title, Penn State has focused its recruiting solely on elite-level prospects, Frank Bodani writes in the York Daily Record.
- Bad news for former Michigan quarterback Ryan Mallett, who was arrested over the weekend.