It appears ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit has a soul mate. Or at least someone who shares his feelings that the NIU Huskies don’t belong in the BCS Orange Bowl. During the selection show he called their placement “a joke.” Can’t Northern Illinois get any respect? I guess the nation’s longest winning streak and back to back 11 win seasons don’t count for much. Then again losing to a 4-8 Iowa Hawkeyes team doesn’t help. NIU entered the Orange Bowl as two touchdown underdogs to Florida State. But the Noles barely escaped a 6-6 Georgia Tech team to get here, and lost to a mediocre N.C. St team.
And couldn’t the Orange Bowl have shown some some respect and class?
a rant from an Orange Bowl representative to an NIU staffer.
“You guys [NIU] don’t even deserve to be here,” the Orange Bowl rep said to the NIU staffer. “We didn’t even want you here.”
According to a source, the exchange took place the other night in a hospitality suite. The Orange Bowl rep had compared NIU to Duke, the source said, and the NIU rep responded by pointing out that the Huskies, who are riding a 12-game winning streak, have been to bowl games in five consecutive seasons. The conversation escalated from there, the source said.
Well, the result didn’t do anything to change anyone’s mind. The Noles dominated, winning 31-10 and accruing nearly twice as many yards as NIU. QB Jordan Lynch, who some claimed deserved to be in New York as a Heisman finalist, put up UGLY numbers on the big stage: 15-41 for 171 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT. And he didn’t do it on the ground either averaging just 1.9 yards per carry, 20 rushes for 44 yards. And that supposed vaunted front four of Northern Illinois got OWNED- giving up 245 yards rushing and not pressuring FSU QB E.J. Manuel, who has 285 yards passing.
Paul M. Banks is CEO of The Sports Bank.net, a Google News site generating millions of unique visitors. He’s also a regular contributor to Chicago Now, Chicago Tribune.com, Walter Football.com, Yardbarker, and Fox Sports
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