The daily pitch from Sports Editor Matt Daniels: April 29, 2024

Apr. 29—➜ after wide receiver Casey Washington went in the sixth round on Saturday to the Atlanta Falcons. That feat last happened in 2012 and 2013 for the Illini.

➜ . The former Unity standout committed to the Illinois State women's basketball program on Saturday after scoring a program record 2,310 points in four seasons at Millikin.

➜ , but Monday's Illini Prairie Conference baseball game between host St. Joseph-Ogden (23-2) and Monticello (24-2) will have significant bearing on who the area's best team is.

Illinois offensive linemen who NFL teams have drafted since 2000. became the latest one when the Arizona Cardinals snapped him up with the 71st overall pick in the third round on Friday night. If Adams makes the Cardinals' roster this summer, he'll join (Commanders), (Texans), (Bengals), (Bears) and (Patriots) as former Illini offensive linemen in the league. Pretty hefty company.

➜ . The Big Ten-leading Illini (25-15, 11-4 Big Ten) host the Missouri Valley Conference-leading Sycamores (30-9, 13-4 MVC) at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Illinois Field, trying to snap a two-game losing skid after losing a weekend series at Maryland.

➜ . The Parkland and Danville Area Community College men's teams will try to find themselves in the top spot when the two-day tournament concludes Tuesday at Weibring Golf Club in Normal.

➜ . Area stalwarts like Monticello, St. Joseph-Ogden and Unity will duke it out on both the boys' and girls' side for conference supremacy on Tuesday in Pontiac.

➜ the BHRA track and cross-country teams.

➜ my Dave Johnson, the Lake Land women's basketball coach; Tom Johnson, the former Bismarck-Henning coach and athletic director who is my mentor; and Nancy Cox, the former Rossville-Alvin track coach who got me started in track and field.

➜ athletes who say they'll work out on their own instead of trying a sport.