#20 Northwestern Wildcats vs Illinois Fighting Illini Game Preview, Prediction


Get ready to LOL! It’s the Land of Lincoln Hat Game, 2018 version, and yes we are publishing our game preview on Sunday night/Monday morning, depending on what part of the world you’re reading this.

Hey, it’s Thanksgiving week and that means just about nobody will be online Tuesday onward. Therefore, we gotta do what we gotta do. We’ll put this Illinois Fighting Illini at #20 Northwestern Wildcats game preview story back at the top later in the week. 

[Read more…]

Chris Collins on His Reaction to Northwestern Winning the Big Ten West

chris collins northwestern

“There’s no bigger fan of their program than me,” said Northwestern basketball coach Chris Collins in regards to Northwestern football and their historic victory on Saturday.

Northwestern, football variety, has clinched the first Big Ten title game appearance in school history, and they did it with two games still left to play thanks to the fact that both Wisconsin and Purdue lost on Saturday, supplementing NU’s double digit upset win in Iowa City. 

[Read more…]

Notre Dame Football: Who is the Biggest Remaining Obstacle to a CFP Berth?

brian kelly notre dame

Your 2018 Notre Dame football team is currently 9-0, having just bested the Northwestern Wildcats 31-21 in Evanston. Notre Dame entered the game ranked third in the AP and coaches’ polls, and fourth in the College Football Playoff rankings- the only poll that truly matters these days.

If ND is unable to stay perfect in their final three games- will their playoff chances demise with them? What if we see more losses from the top teams down the stretch? Does that mean that more than one single loss team will get into the final four?

What we do know for certain is that two losses, by any combination, will kibosh any team’s playoff chances. So where do the biggest challenges lie down the stretch for the Fighting Irish?

[Read more…]

Why 2018 Northwestern is Sort of Like 2016-17 Manchester United


As the tired cliché goes “you can only play the opponents in front of you.” Building off that, you can’t control who is in your league, and how strong or weak they are. Another shopworn platitude “a win’s a win” is certainly true, especially in cases where the sample size, the opportunities for wins, losses and draws were significant.

These lessons certainly applied to Manchester United in 2016-17, the first year Jose Mourinho was in charge and they achieved a sorta kinda “plastic treble.” You can’t really describe that team as good, or bad, but you must give them kudos for being “achieved.” The current Northwestern football team is quite similar, not actually good, nor bad either though, and just kind of mediocre.

[Read more…]

Northwestern Football: the Road Map to a Big Ten Title Game Appearance

northwestern wildcats

If you’re tired of seeing Wisconsin in the Big Ten title game all the time, well, a.) you’re far from alone, and b.) it looks like a change could be coming. The Badgers now face very long odds of getting back to Indianapolis this year. The first Saturday in December could see the Badgers football team doing some Christmas shopping, playing blast golf, watching the conference championship games on television or some other type of recreational activity. One thing they probably won’t be doing is playing college football at night in Indy.  

[Read more…]

Tommy Rees Exclusive: Notre Dame QB Coach Prepares for De Facto Homecoming Game


Northwestern’s Ryan Field should be rocking Saturday night when undefeated and #3 Notre Dame come calling for the first time since 1976. It will be extra special for Tommy Rees, Notre Dame quarterbacks coach and one of the most accomplished passers in school history. Rees is a Lake Forest native who grew up a bit of a Northwestern fan.

He attended a lot of Wildcats games in his youth, and Northwestern was a factor in his recruiting process before he decided on Notre Dame. Once Northwestern committed to Trevor Siemian, Rees looked elsewhere. He ended up leaving South Bend among the top five in 21 different single-game, single-season or career passing categories, including the highest career pass completion percentage in school history.

[Read more…]

#3 Notre Dame Football Game Preview, Prediction: Week 9 at Northwestern Wildcats

As Notre Dame football continues to push towards the college football playoff, Saturday night’s trip to Northwestern might be a sneaky tough hurdle to clear. The Wildcats are substantial underdogs, but they always get up for Notre Dame; always. That’s partially because the Wildcats honestly believe that their program could or should be on par with ND.

The two institutions are very similar and both programs stress academics much more than your typical college football program. Both NU and ND have been known to part ways with players who don’t make the grade.

[Read more…]

#20 Wisconsin Football Preview vs Northwestern Wildcats


When #20 Wisconsin football visits Northwestern on Saturday, it could be the de facto Big Ten West Division championship game; maybe. After all, these are two teams on top of the division, and we’re already halfway through the season. NU is in first place in the division at 4-1, with the Badgers right behind them at 3-1.

However, third place Iowa (3-1) seems to be the trendy pick to win the division, and look out for fourth place Purdue, who also only have one loss, and are playing the best ball right now.

[Read more…]

P.J. Fleck, Pat Fitzgerald, Florida St. Bag Opine on College Football Turnover Prop Trend

pj fleck

Perhaps P.J. Fleck said it best: “as educators, you’re always teaching life lessons in a very cultural way.”

Turnover props, the latest craze in college football, do indeed, as the Minnesota Head Coach puts it: “teach the importance of turnovers.”

Most people believe this trend started with the Miami Hurricanes’ turnover chain last season, which is certainly the most iconic object of the genre by far. However, when Lovie Smith took over the Illinois program in 2016, his staff installed a contraption in the team room/press conference room that does exactly what all turnover props do- emphasize the importance of getting takeaways.

[Read more…]

Northwestern PK Drew Luckenbaugh Raising the Bar By Developing New App

drew luckenbaugh

Northwestern’s back-up placekicker Drew Luckenbaugh was thrust into duty this week when first-stringer, Charlie Kuhbander went down with an injury. Luckenbaugh’s first career field-goal attempt Saturday went about as poorly as possible.

He anticipated his initial attempt, a 42 yard effort, with so much gusto that he actually kicked it before it was fully placed, and the result was an unsightly line drive that barely left the ground — and ended up nowhere near the goalposts.

[Read more…]

Northwestern Deny Nebraska Cornhuskers, Scott Frost First Win of the Year; in Tweets


Congratulations to the Northwestern Wildcats, on their overcoming a double digit deficit to defeat the Nebraska Cornhuskers and deny them their first win of the season. The Cats claimed the NU Bowl 34-31 in OT. Nebraska coach Scott Frost came extremely close to achieving his first win as the leader of his alma mater, but that milestone will have to wait.

If they can’t knock off the Fighting Flecks of Minnesota next week, then perhaps it will happen October 27th versus Bethune-Cookman. The home team now improves to 2-6 in the last 8 games of this series, and Saturday marked the first home win over the Nebraska Cornhuskers in Northwestern program history.

[Read more…]

Nebraska Football Game Preview: Week Six at Northwestern Wildcats


I can only describe the current state of Nebraska football by invoking the words of C. Montgomery Burns during “Last Exit to Springfield,” an episode of The Simpsons widely considered to be among the best of all time. Mr. Burns told Waylon Smithers: “oh it didn’t use to be like this. It didn’t use to be like this at all.”

Among the 128 FBS programs, Nebraska is one of ten to win at least 800 games. Nebraska football has more victories against power five opponents than any other program, as well as the fifth most victories all-time, behind only Michigan, Ohio State, Texas, and Alabama. Yet here they are, headed to Ryan Field 0-5, 0-3 in league play and substantial underdogs to a Northwestern Wildcats team with a losing record. Yes indeed, year one under Scott Frost has had more “Growing Pains” than Alan Thicke and Kirk Cameron combined.

[Read more…]