Huskie Nation isn't
standing by and letting their alma mater get trashed on. NIU fans are firing back, and one supporter
is showing how he feels. Larry Hickey,
owner of Hickey's Corner Store right near campus on
"That clown came on ESPN in that hour long show and made me so mad that it was a no brainer what I was going to put on that sign," said Hickey.
Hickey is an NIU grad. He says he's a big Huskie fan and his store boasts a "Wall of Fame" dedicated to NIU's sporting history.
"The entire community is ecstatic about this," said Hickey.
That community excitement can be measured in Huskie gear sales. The merchandise has been flying off the shelves at NIU's bookstore.
"There were tons of people flooding the store," said bookstore employee Lindsay Popp. "Our internet sales have been skyrocketing."
Popp says Herbstreit's words may hurt Huskie Nation feelings, but it only adds fuel to Huskie Fever encouraged by the schools first trip to a BCS Bowl.
"Every time I go to ESPN's website whether it's a nice article or not, there's NIU on the front page," said Eddie Wildermuth, a fifth-year senior, who says he's glad he stuck around another year at school just so he could see his team play in the Orange Bowl.
"Just talking about it is just surreal," said Wildermuth
Justine Brown says
she started freaking out when she heard her Huskies were off to the Orange Bowl
come New Years Day. She says she's going
to try to be first in line for those free tickets for the game. Brown says she plans on going to
"I have a mini-van, so anyway I can get down there I'll get down there," said Brown.
Many students say
they understand what Herbstreit was trying to say, but it sounded more like
hate directed toward
"A lot of people don't think we deserve it, but we do, and we're going to show the Seminoles who's boss," said Case.