BEARS FIND BOURBONNAIS TO THEIR LIKING: The Bears and Olivet Nazarene University on Monday agreed to keep the team’s training camp at the Bourbonnais campus for the next nine years.
The Bears have called Olivet Nazarene University their training camp home since 2002 based on the excellent facilities that help the team prepare for the season and the close proximity to their fan base, with the campus situated approximately 55 miles from Chicago.
This season, the Bears have used the newly-built Student Life Recreation Center on the ONU campus to house their weight room, indoor walk-throughs and personnel meetings.
Future planned University upgrades will allow the Bears to practice on updated practice fields while enjoying renovated locker room and training facilities.
Bears training camp at ONU routinely hosts approximately 100,000 fans annually over the course of the three-week camp period. Admission and parking are free to fans and this year’s camp included a kids’ interactive area, team pro shop, post-practice concerts, kids autograph sessions and a variety of theme days for fans to participate.
BEARS ADD RUNNING BACK: The Bears signed running back Curtis Brinkley to a one-year contract Monday and waived wide receiver Marcus Rucker.
The 5-foot-9, 208-pound Brinkley spent three seasons with the San Diego Chargers (2010-12) appearing in 23 games with two starts compiling 227 rushing yards and one touchdown on 71 carries (3.2 ypc) to go along with 118 receiving yards on 19 receptions.
The Syracuse alum also has seven kickoff returns during his NFL career for 149 yards (21.3 ypr).
REDS BLANK CUBS: Cincinnati's Brandon Phillips broke a scoreless seventh-inning tie with a two-run home run, lifting the Reds over the Cubs 2-0 at Wrigley Field. Mat Latos (12-3) worked eight innings, allowing six hits while striking out nine. Aroldis Chapman fanned the side in the ninth for his 26th save. Travis Wood also went eight innings for the Cubs, limiting the Reds to just four hits.
LITTLE LEAGUE TO DISCUSS PEDS: Little League Baseball plans to introduce an educational program for coaches and volunteers intended to raise awareness about the use and dangers of performance-enhancing drugs among young players.
Working with the Taylor Hooton Foundation, Little League hopes to have an online program ready for the 2014 season.
The youth sports organization had been in discussions with the foundation for more than a year about such a program, well before Major League Baseball announced suspensions recently for more than a dozen players following a lengthy investigation into a Florida anti-aging clinic accused of distributing PEDs.
HUSEMAN JOINS VALPO BROADCAST TEAM: David Huseman will join the Valpo Sports Radio Network as executive producer and will also provide color commentary for home football and men's basketball games.
Huseman has done play-by-play and color commentary for numerous college athletics events on Lakeshore Public Television over the last two years, and is also the play-by-play voice of the Chicago Slaughter of the IFL on Sportstownchicago.com. He also worked for a year in the sports department of ABC-7 Chicago, and has experience as a sports talk radio host as well.
Huseman rounds out the trio of color commentators for the radio network this year. Media relations coordinator Brad Collignon will team up with Todd Ickow to provide color commentary for road football games, while assistant athletic director Aaron Leavitt will handle color commentary on the road for men's basketball for the third straight season.
VU HOSTING ALUMNI GAME: Valparaiso University will host an alumni match at 4 p.m. Saturday at the Athletics-Recreation Center. Admission is free.
PERKOVICH WINS FLORIDA ATLANTIC TITLE: John B. Perkovich, head pro at Briar Ridge Country Club, won the 35's singles crown last weekend at the Florida Atlantic Summer Championships in Boca Raton, Fla. Perkovich, the No. 2 seed, defeated the top seed 7-5, 6-3 in the finals of the clay court event, ending the match with two aces.
Around the horn
The Times is looking for correspondents to cover Illinois prep sports. Those interested should contact Mike Nieto at (219) 933-3232 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.