With its lopsided defeat of Purdue Saturday, Northern Illinois University’s 4-0 football team made history.
NIU is the first Mid-American Conference team to defeat two Big 10 teams (Iowa is the other) in the same year.
That’s quite an accomplishment.
With back-to-back MAC championships under its belt, capped by an Orange Bowl appearance last season, NIU football really seems to have come into its own.
Yet, fans (current and prospective) should not be lulled into the belief that this team will automatically crank out victory after victory like a well-oiled machine.
In their first three games, the Huskies trailed at various points, and their margins of victory were close (30-27 over Iowa, 45-35 over Idaho, 43-39 over Eastern Illinois University).
Even after its 55-24 trouncing of Purdue, NIU is still giving up an average of 31 points a game, while scoring an average of 43.
Defensive purists may cringe, but fans who love lots of scoring should get their fill – and then some.
NIU opens the defense of its MAC title with an away game Saturday at Kent State. Of the next seven games, four will be in DeKalb (Akron, 4 p.m. Oct. 12; Eastern Michigan, 2:30 p.m. Oct. 26; Ball State, 7 p.m. Nov. 13; and Western Michigan, 6 p.m. Nov. 26).
And DeKalb is just a hop, skip and a jump from the Sauk Valley. OK, actually it’s in the range of 40 to 50 miles or so, depending on where you live, but those miles pass quickly on the tollway.
Why not pick a game, get some tickets, and head for Huskie Stadium?