Illinois State Police documents show that the agency frequently assigns troopers to escort sports teams, musicians and even filmmakers across the congested roadways of greater Chicago.,Illinois State Police wouldn’t comment on the trip, so the Tribune made a public records request for all police escort contracts in 2018.,Though critics have called police escorts for sports teams a frivolous and potentially dangerous use of public resources, state police defend them as a way to provide “safety and security for all those involved in the motorcade as well as for the motoring public.”,The contracts show that visiting NFL teams routinely receive police escorts to and from the airport, hotels and Soldier Field.,College football teams are also major customers: Northwestern University had a standing order for police escorts between its team hotel and Ryan Field on game days, and the University of Illinois paid for the service when it played at Soldier Field in September.

The Beavercreek High girls cross country team used their friends on the girls soccer team as motivation the following day, Nov. 10, at the state cross country championships at the famous National Trail Raceway drag strip.,The Beavercreek High School girls cross country team celebrates its state title on the victory podium, Nov. 10 at National Trail Raceway in Hebron.,The Beavercreek High School girls cross country team celebrates its state title on the victory podium, Nov. 10 at National Trail Raceway in Hebron.,The Beavercreek High School girls soccer team poses for a team photo with the girls Division I state championship trophy, Nov. 9 after defeating Strongsville 4-2 at MAPFRE Stadium in Columbus.,The Beavercreek High School girls soccer team poses for a team photo with the girls Division I state championship trophy, Nov. 9 after defeating Strongsville 4-2 at MAPFRE Stadium in Columbus.

The road was paved to the Final Four, but Nevada’s run ended with a one-point loss to Cinderella story Loyola-Chicago, a bitter end to a banner year that saw Nevada win the Mountain West, earn 29 victories (tied for the most in program history) and reach the Sweet 16 for the second time ever.,Dan Avansino takes aim at Manogue Reno High’s Dan Avansino entered 2018 as the longest-tenured Northern Nevada football coach at the 4A level with the same school.,Nevada women reach MW Tournament final The Wolf Pack women’s basketball team had an up-and-down first season under head coach Amanda Levens, but it ended in historic fashion, with Nevada reaching the Mountain West Tournament title game for the first time in its history.,The Wolf Pack led Boise State for much of the game before a buzzer-beater sent the Broncos to a 62-60 win to deprive Nevada of its first NCAA Tournament berth.,When it was founded in 2008, the Bighorns were Northern Nevada’s first affiliated minor-league team in more than 15 years after the city lost the Reno Silver Sox in 1992.

In Mississippi, a homecoming queen swapped her tiara for a helmet and wound up kicking the game-winner for her high school team.,Or that her last minute of playing time — for her girls’ high school team — was chalked up in the late 1930s.,“When we came off the court after the Michigan loss, the players said to me, ‘Don’t worry Sister Jean, we’ll do it again next year,'” she recalled during a recent interview, then bowed her head, smiled and sighed.,So even though he makes his living in Los Angeles these days, James made sure to be on hand and on time when the “I Promise School” opened this year.,The school, a partnership between James’ family foundation and Akron City Schools, offers year-round programming, family development skills and days that begin at 9 a.m. and end at 5 p.m.

In Mississippi, a homecoming queen swapped her tiara for a helmet and wound up kicking the game-winner for her high school team.,Or that her last minute of playing time — for her girls’ high school team — was chalked up in the late 1930s.,“When we came off the court after the Michigan loss, the players said to me, ‘Don’t worry Sister Jean, we’ll do it again next year,”‘ she recalled during a recent interview, then bowed her head, smiled and sighed.,So even though he makes his living in Los Angeles these days, James made sure to be on hand and on time when the “I Promise School” opened this year.,The school, a partnership between James’ family foundation and Akron City Schools, offers year-round programming, family development skills and days that begin at 9 a.m. and end at 5 p.m.

SALT LAKE CITY — As impressive as Donovan Mitchell has been so far with the Utah Jazz — his sophomore shooting slump notwithstanding — what the young NBA player has done off the court might be even more impressive.,It's one thing to enjoy watching sports figures and teams compete, especially when they do things we can't (see any dunk Mitchell has ever done), pile up the fun statistics and wins and provide hours of entertainment.,Mitchell has made as much of a name for the way he donates his time and Jazz merchandise to the community — from spending hours each month with students at Kearns High School, showing up at random Fourth of July barbecues, buying groceries and phones to help people out, attending local high school and college games to, as one writer on our staff described it, "bringing joy to thousands of people in the community.",And that just scratches the surface of an organization that makes sure its players visit hospitals, donate to charitable causes, give people in need gifts and tickets, and speak to students and other groups, among many other kind acts befitting of the late Larry H. Miller's mantra that suggested people, "Go about doing good until there's too much good in the world.",The former BYU star quarterback has become a legendary sports figure in New Orleans — he was already considered a saint in Provo for leaping over Texas — and, as Brandon Judd described, "has turned into one of the most intriguing players in the NFL."

So even though he makes his living in Los Angeles these days, James made sure to be on hand and on time when the “I Promise School” opened this year.,FILE- In this Nov. 27, 2018, file photo, Loyola of Chicago’s Sister Jean shows off the NCAA Final Four ring she received before an NCAA college basketball game between Loyola of Chicago and Nevada in Chicago.,(AP Photo/Matt Marton, File) FILE- In this Nov. 27, 2018, file photo, Loyola of Chicago’s Sister Jean shows off the NCAA Final Four ring she received before an NCAA college basketball game between Loyola of Chicago and Nevada in Chicago.,(AP Photo/Matt Marton, File) FILE – In this March 24, 2018, file photo, Loyola-Chicago basketball chaplain Sister Jean Dolores Schmidt speaks with Loyola-Chicago guard Ben Richardson after a regional final NCAA college basketball tournament game between Loyola-Chicago and Kansas State in Atlanta.,(AP Photo/David Goldman, File) FILE – In this March 24, 2018, file photo, Loyola-Chicago basketball chaplain Sister Jean Dolores Schmidt speaks with Loyola-Chicago guard Ben Richardson after a regional final NCAA college basketball tournament game between Loyola-Chicago and Kansas State in Atlanta.

FILE- In this Nov. 27, 2018, file photo, Loyola of Chicago's Sister Jean shows off the NCAA Final Four ring she received before an NCAA college basketball game between Loyola of Chicago and Nevada in Chicago.,FILE- In this Nov. 27, 2018, file photo, Loyola of Chicago's Sister Jean shows off the NCAA Final Four ring she received before an NCAA college basketball game between Loyola of Chicago and Nevada in Chicago.,Photo: Matt Marton, AP

FILE- In this Nov. 27, 2018, file photo, Loyola of Chicago's Sister Jean shows off the NCAA Final Four ring she received before an NCAA college basketball game between Loyola of Chicago and Nevada in Chicago.,FILE- In this Nov. 27, 2018, file photo, Loyola of Chicago's Sister Jean shows off the NCAA Final Four ring she received before an NCAA college basketball game between Loyola of Chicago and Nevada in Chicago.,Here are six of the most heartwarming moments of 2018: read more

Here are six of the most heartwarming moments of 2018:

LOYOLA’S NOT-SECRET-FOR-LONG SECRET WEAPON read more

FILE- In this Nov. 27, 2018, file photo, Loyola of Chicago's Sister Jean shows off the NCAA Final Four ring she received before an NCAA college basketball game between Loyola of Chicago and Nevada in Chicago.,FILE- In this Nov. 27, 2018, file photo, Loyola of Chicago's Sister Jean shows off the NCAA Final Four ring she received before an NCAA college basketball game between Loyola of Chicago and Nevada in Chicago.,Photo: Matt Marton, AP

FILE- In this Nov. 27, 2018, file photo, Loyola of Chicago's Sister Jean shows off the NCAA Final Four ring she received before an NCAA college basketball game between Loyola of Chicago and Nevada in Chicago.,FILE- In this Nov. 27, 2018, file photo, Loyola of Chicago's Sister Jean shows off the NCAA Final Four ring she received before an NCAA college basketball game between Loyola of Chicago and Nevada in Chicago.,Here are six of the most heartwarming moments of 2018: read more