Iowa Hawkeyes vs Northern Illinois Huskies: Game Preview, Prediction

Northern Illinois Coach Rod Carey articulated what the atmosphere will be like for his team’s season opener at the Iowa Hawkeyes perfectly: “Those guys are right on top of you.”

“Iowa has a great setting and they have great fans. We’re going to have our contingent in the corner, and when we score, it’s going to be great. But if they ever score, it’s really loud. When we’re running onto that field, adversity is going to hit them right there.”

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NIU DE Sutton Smith: Nation’s Best Under the Radar Player

sutton smith

If you’re a fan of a MAC team, a NIU die-hard or a member of the national college football literati, then you are most likely very well aware of Sutton Smith. If you’re somebody who doesn’t fit into any of those three stated categories, then your awareness of the Northern Illinois Huskies junior defensive end may be limited. 

In 2018, all of us should get more edification on the St. Charles, Missouri native, who became just the second player in school history, and the first since LeShon Johnson in 1993, to be named a consensus All-American last season.

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2018 Northern Illinois Football Season Preview, Predictions, Prospectus

After a blip in 2016, the 2017 Northern Illinois football team returned to the level of excellence that we have come to associate with the program. Led an ultra stingy defense that returns almost all of their key players and stars, the bar is set higher this fall. For NIU, it’s time to win more than the MAC West division in 2018.

Success will be defined by winning the MAC, getting to a bigger bowl game and ending the postseason game losing streak. This journey will include the most ambitious and impressive non-conference schedule that NIU has seen in recent memory. They open at Big Ten West power Iowa, and travel to college football blue blood Florida State in late September.

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Florida State Football Welcomes NIU Huskies for Orange Bowl Rematch

florida state football cheerleaders 2015 nfl mock draft

Kudos to the NIU Huskies, who are truly embracing the spirit of “taking on all comers.” Next season (as the 2017 slate is already “this season,” making 2018 “next year”) Florida State football welcomes the MAC standard program to Tallahassee. It’s a rematch of the 2013 Orange Bowl, which was historical for several reasons.

It marked the first appearance by a Mid-American Conference school in a Bowl Championship Series game. It will also be the final appearance by a MAC school in the BCS, as that cartel is now extinct and replaced by the playoff system.

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