CHICAGO | University of Illinois trustees have agreed to a deal in which New York Yankees star Curtis Granderson will pay for most of a new baseball stadium at his alma mater, the University of Illinois-Chicago.
Trustees voted Wednesday to name the new stadium after Granderson, who announced in February that he will donate $5 million to the project. The total cost is projected to be $7 million
The open-air, brick-and-stone stadium will seat 1,200 and is expected to open in 2015. The plan calls for using the field for Flames games and events for Chicago Public Schools and youth organizations.
Trustees approve extension, raise for Groce: University trustees have signed off on a $200,000 annual raise and contract extension for Illinois basketball coach John Groce.
Groce's salary will increase to $1.2 million a year. His contract now runs through April 2018. In Groce's first season, Illinois finished 23-13 and defeated Colorado in the NCAA tournament before falling to Miami.
Illinois on Wednesday also said Western Michigan forward Darius Paul and Oregon State guard Ahmad Starks had officially transferred to join the Illini.
Paul is the younger brother of former Illini star Brandon Paul. The 6-8, 220-pound forward was the Mid-American Conference freshman of the year last season after averaging 10.4 points and 5.7 rebounds a game. The Gurnee native will have to sit out a season under NCAA rules.
Starks is a 5-9, 170-pound Chicago native with a year of eligibility. He averaged 12.1 points a game last season for the Beavers.
Starks has said he plans to apply for an NCAA waiver because of an ailing grandmother in Chicago. That could let him play next season.
Groce said sophomore forward Myke Henry has left Illinois.