DeKALB, Ill. - Coming off the most successful season in school history, three-straight years with 11-wins or more and back-to-back Mid-American Conference Championships, Northern Illinois will face one of its most challenging schedules in recent seasons according to the 2013 slate released Friday by Northern Illinois and the Mid-American Conference.
With five home games at Huskie Stadium, where NIU has won 21
straight games, but only one home contest in the first six weeks of the season,
Northern Illinois will be tested early before finishing with a MAC West midweek
gauntlet in November featuring consecutive contests versus
"With only three of the first nine games at home, the 2013 schedule presents a great challenge for our team," said NIU first-year head coach Rod Carey. "We look forward to meeting the challenge head on. With just five home games, we expect and need Huskie Stadium to be filled every time we are there. We've had quite a run at home, and we need great fan support to keep our streak alive with the quality of opponents coming to Huskie Stadium this year."
Northern Illinois will play two Big Ten teams in the same
season for the first time since 2010 as the Huskies open the 2013 campaign at
Iowa on August 31 and travel to West Lafayette, Ind. to face Purdue Sept. 28,
bookending NIU's non-conference slate. After enjoying a rare September open
date on Sept. 7, NIU will play
NIU will open defense of its MAC title with a rematch of
last year's Marathon MAC Championship game at
Northern Illinois plays its first league home game Oct. 12
Six days later, NIU closes out the regular season versus
"We know we are always going to get everyone's best week in and week out," Carey said. "That's been true for over a decade and won't be any different this year."
The Mid-American Conference and NIU will announce games that will be televised as part of the ESPN Regional Television (ERT) over-the-air syndication package, additional locally televised games and game times later this spring.
NIU opens 2013 spring practices March 20 with the spring
game slated for April 13 at 2:30 p.m. at Huskie Stadium. Season tickets for the
Huskies' five-game home schedule are on sale through the NIU Athletics External
Office with prices beginning at just $50 for the brand new Huskieland Plan.
Complete information, as well as season ticket renewal packets, will be
available at the 2013 Football Kickoff event on Saturday, March 2 at the
Northern Illinois returns 14 starters (8 offense, 5 defense, 1 specialist) in 2013, led by dual-threat quarterback Jordan Lynch, a 2012 second-team All-American who accounted for nearly 5,000 yards of total offense while setting NCAA records for rushing by a quarterback with 12 100-yard rushing games. Leading tackler Jimmie Ward and the Huskies' entire offensive line are among the 55 returning letterwinners for 2013.
NORTHERN ILLINOIS UNIVERSITY 2013 FOOTBALL SCHEDULE
Day, Date OPPONENT SITE TIME (CT)
Aug. 31 at
Sat., Sept. 7 Open
Sept. 14 at
Sat., Sept. 21 EASTERN ILLINOIS
Sept. 28 at Purdue
Oct. 5 at
Sat., Oct. 12
Oct. 19 at Central Michigan* Mt. Pleasant,
Sat., Oct. 26 EASTERN MICHIGAN*
Nov. 2 at UMass*
Wed., Nov. 13 BALL
Nov. 20 at
Tues., Nov. 26 WESTERN
Dec. 6 MAC Championship Game (ESPN2)
Home games in BOLD, ALL CAPS. Times listed are Central Time Zone and are subject to change.
* Mid-American Conference Game