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Better Know: Northern Illinois

Fight team fight for the Bronze Stalk…

Oh, baby. That nervous energy you feel around Muncie right now is the pending drama and national attention being given to this Saturday’s game. Sure, there may be the Land Grant Trophy for Penn State versus  Michigan State. There’s the Egg Bowl between Mississippi State and Ole Miss. There’s the Bedlam Bell for the Oklahoma/Oklahoma State victor. But all those trophies are bush league. Nothing, and I mean nothing, compares with the awesomeness of trophy goodness that is at stake with Saturday’s game… THE BRONZE STALK. I’ve had the privilege of seeing this baby up close the last time BSU defeated NIU. Of course, that was 2008, but the important thing to remember is that no trophy case is complete without this work of modern art. Bronze Stalk, I know you’ve gotten comfortable in Dekalb, but I hope you’re packing your bronze bags. Because your bronze ass is about to be relocated to Muncie for the foreseeable future. Plan accordingly. For those of you who aren’t bronzed trophies and who have quite the affinity for the Cardinal and White, time to better know NIU!

Team: Northern Illinois Huskies
Record: 4-1 (1-0 MAC)
Ranking: Unranked
Head Coach: Dave Doeren
Series: 20-17-2 in favor of BSU
Last Meeting: 2011, 41-38 NIU win in Dekalb, IL

Northern Illinois Coach Dave Doeren
… enters his second season at the NIU helm after posting an 11-3 record and MAC Championship victory along with a GoDaddy.com Bowl win.
… was the former defensive coordinator at Wisconsin as well as an assistant coach at Kansas, Montana, USC and Drake.

Northern Illinois-BSU Randomness…
… BSU enjoys a 9-7 series lead in Muncie
… BSU trails the series in recent memory, with a 2-3 record in their last five meetings and three straight losses to the Huskies.
… BSU-NIU has instituted a traveling trophy for this contest, known as the Bronze Stalk.

Northern Illinois News & Trends…
… NIU’s only loss was their season-opener against Iowa at Soldier Field in Chicago. Since then, they’ve defeated UT-Martin, Army, Kansas, and Central Michigan.
… NIU is projected this week by Phil Steele to be the MAC representative in the Little Caesar’s Pizza Bowl.

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