By Sara Romano
Two months removed from surgery and recently out of a body cast, then-4-year-old Jack still walked with a noticeable limp, but was thrilled just to be sitting on the Chicago Wolves’ bench watching warm-ups one year ago.
Born with hip dysplasia, a congenital misalignment of the hip joint, the curly-haired, blue-eyed boy dreamed of one day playing hockey for the Wolves.
In February 2014, Jack Kabela took part in the Wolves Wish program, which was established to provide special experiences for families facing adversity. Jack’s “wish day” involved joining the team for warm-ups, tossing t-shirts into the crowd with the mascot Skates and hanging out with the players for a private autograph session after the game.
By Eric Clark
Social media can be treacherous terrain for professional and college athletes. But if used with a specific objective, experts say, there might not be a more powerful marketing tool.
At the collegiate level, athletic departments generally monitor athletes’ Twitter use carefully, but it’s impossible to police entirely. Former North Alabama football player Bradley Patterson was dismissed after posting a racist tweet about President Obama in 2012, while former Oklahoma wide receiver Jaz Reynolds was suspended for insensitive tweets after a shooting incident at Texas in 2010.
By Eric Clark
Hall of Famer and former Cub Billy Williams remembered Minnie Minoso as a player who gave everything he had to his team, teammates and fans – even if he didn’t always get the respect he deserved.
“We all thought of him as the Jackie Robinson of Latin players,” Williams said.
By Ryan Lund
Dan Boeser had a lot to think about during the nearly nine-hour bus ride between Bensenville, Ill. and Lincoln, Neb.
A former assistant coach with the United States Hockey League’s Chicago Steel, Boeser was named the team’s head coach and general manager on Feb. 11, after former coach Scott McConnell and the Steel mutually agreed to part ways, according to a statement released by the team.
“I was notified by ownership that I was taking over, didn’t have any practice time and basically just hopped on a bus for Lincoln for a two-game road trip,” Boeser said.
By Tim Penman
Clarification: An earlier version of this story incorrectly characterized Nojel Eastern as the last Evanston player since Everette Stephens in 1984 to get offers from NCAA Division I schools. Stephens should have been described as the last player to garner so much attention from Division I schools.
Until the age of eight, Nojel Eastern’s mom would school him in one-on-one basketball games on the lakefront court at Loyola Park.
“I beat him quite a few times, I made him cry a few times,” Tamala Reed said. “When he figured it out that he was faster than his mom, that he could shoot it, that’s when I couldn’t beat him anymore.”
The Evanston sophomore guard is now 6-foot-5, 10 inches taller than his mom and is considered by experts to be arguably the best sophomore basketball player in Illinois, the most highly recruited from Evanston in 31 years.
By Andrew Fowler
As more conversations about gender equality and gender roles take place in the U.S., consumers are changing the way they shop. No longer are shoppers only buying what has traditionally been meant for one specific gender. Retailers are now adjusting to potentially different and wider customer bases.
According to Mintel, American consumers are “questioning traditional notions of gender, rejecting the restraints of stereotypes.” Even globally the United Nations plans to issue new goals for gender equality, meaning these trends could be expanding worldwide.
By Bennet Hayes
Chicago’s winter got a little gloomier Wednesday.
Within the span of hours Tuesday night, news broke of injuries to both Derrick Rose of the Chicago Bulls and Patrick Kane of the Chicago Blackhawks. The ailments – a torn meniscus in the right knee for Rose and a left clavicle fracture for Kane – will sideline two of the city’s biggest sports stars for weeks and possibly months.
The Blackhawks and Bulls, each harboring legitimate championship aspirations, are now left to scramble. Kane underwent surgery Wednesday and will miss approximately 12 weeks, according to team doctors. Rose’s timetable for return is less certain, but it’s possible his 2014-15 season is over.
By Sara Romano
Wolves’ season-ticket holder Grace Garritano can remember the first game she and her husband Rob ever attended.
It was Game 7 of the 1998 Turner Cup championship series.
The couple was up in the “triple-upper nosebleed seats” of a sold-out Allstate Arena.
And the Wolves defeated the Detroit Vipers to clinch the IHL league championship.
The Garritanos were hooked.
By Lukas J. Voss
Focusing on athletics and academics at the same time can be difficult for young athletes, especially in a sport like hockey that requires a large time commitment and plenty of driving to get to rinks and tournaments. Bridgedale academy is trying to change that. The school is offering students the ability to practice and study in the same place. Providing excellence in academics and athletics is just one of their goals.
By Katherine Dempsey
Tina has only gotten her period once during college.
The 21-year-old runner at a Big Ten university remembers seldom menstruating in high school or in college. Diagnosed with anorexia during her freshman year of high school, Tina – whose real name has been changed to protect privacy – spent several weeks out of school for treatment and to escape from the academic pressure that she says sparked her eating disorder.
Tina didn’t participate in track her freshman year of high school, and she says she remembers weighing less than 90 pounds at her lowest weight. With running, the anorexia also related to a her focus on eating right to run well and that turned into limiting the kinds of foods she ate. Continue reading