Jul 02

What is a “RED RIOT”?

“Red Riot” is the student organization of athletic supporters from Northern Illinois University who come together in force (like a “riot”, albeit in a fun way!), to support NIU and the NIU athletes.  The group are known for “over the top” ways of showing their support from painted faces, crazy-wild costumes, and just about anything else fun that will demonstrate school spirit. Red Riot will always be there to demonstrate NIU student support for all our athletes in a variety of sports.

Aug 31

Huskies drop a pair

DeKALB — The Northern Illinois University’s women’s volleyball team faced a reality check on the second day of the NIU Invitational. Two teams from two power conferences came into the Convention Center to face the Huskies in two competitive matches. 

Aug 29

NIU men’s soccer looks to bounce back after lackluster season

Head coach Eric Luzzi and the Northern Illinois men’s soccer team are not going to shy away from the down year they dealt with last season.

Aug 26

Volleyball Preview: NIU roster sports only 3 upperclassman

DeKALB – In college sports, the makeup of a team goes in cycles.

Aug 26

Envelope, please! Football to kick off Thursday, reveal new QB

Da’Ron Brown (4) celebrates a touchdown.

Da’Ron Brown celebrates a touchdown.

As the tiresome summer reality shows finally reveal their destined-for-obscurity winners, it’s Rod Carey who soon will truly provide “the moment we’ve all been waiting for.”

Who will quarterback the NIU Huskies football team? Drew Hare? Anthony Maddie? Matt McIntosh?

“Each one of them has a different release,” wide receiver Da’Ron Brown said, “but at the same time, they all give us an opportunity to win the MAC, so it’s up to you to catch the ball.”

Barring late-breaking news, the answer comes at 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 28, when the winningest football team in Illinois and the Mid-American Conference kicks off the 2014 season at Huskie Stadium.

“Getting closer, getting closer,” Carey told reporters Monday.

“Here’s my expectation. My expectation is real easy for the quarterback. I don’t care who’s in there. They have all performed at such a high level that I expect that person that’s in there to play well, and they have proven that they can do that right now.”

Play well like Jordan Lynch? Not exactly.

“We don’t have a quarterback that we can run quarterback powers 30 times a game. I think there have been two in the history of college football who can do it – Lynch and Tebow – so that’s not going to be us. It will be more traditional – if you want to use that word – as far as running backs getting more carries,” said Carey, who’s 12-3 since taking over the Huskies prior to their appearance in the 2013 Orange Bowl.

“Because we have a really veteran group over there on offense … they really don’t get into if this (quarterback) is going to affect us,” he added. “It’s an expectation that our whole group has: No matter who’s in, let’s go.”

NIU Huskie Football fans

Yes, let’s go! All students are admitted FREE with their NIU OneCards!

  • Students are encouraged to attend the “We Are Huskies Tailgate” featuring free food and tailgate fare from 4 to 5:30 p.m. in Central Park.
  • Freshmen and new transfer students interested in leading the team onto the field MUST wear their gray Northern PACT T-shirts to participate in the procession.
  • At 5:30 p.m., new students will process from Central Park to the northeast gate of Huskie Stadium near the softball field. New students not attending the tailgate who wish to join the procession onto the field should gather at the northeast gate at 5:30 p.m.
  • Game Day information, including tailgating

NIU, which earned four straight MAC West titles in the last four seasons, and in 2013 made a MAC record sixth-straight bowl appearance, returns 16 starters for 2014: nine on offense, six on defense and one specialist.

Winners of 24 of their last 27 games, posting a 46-10 tally since 2010, the Huskies still own a nation-leading, 26-game winning streak in their home stadium, dating back to 2009. They also rule the country with 15 consecutive road victories in games played in their opponents’ home stadiums, including wins at Army, Purdue and Iowa.

The Huskies’ 46 wins over the last four years ranks second among all FBS teams behind only Oregon and ahead of Boise State (45), LSU (44) and Oklahoma (43).

Ladell Fleming

Ladell Fleming

Although Presbyterian finished 3-8 in 2013, going 1-4 in the Big South Conference, Coach Carey is not taking the Blue Hose lightly.

“Coach Nichols has a fine football team and, to his words, he said it: He probably has his best football team to date, and I believe it. They are a fine football team. They are obviously well coached. It doesn’t take more than 15 minutes of watching film to tell that their schemes are solid,” Carey said.

“They have some really good players. No. 84, their wide receiver, is as good a player as there is in the country, I firmly believe that. I think he is going to present a big time challenge for us. No. 2, as preseason All-American, as a returner and slot receiver, he can move now, he can run with anybody. He’s a good football player,” he added.

“Their quarterback? They took the redshirt off him about midway through the year and played him as a true freshman, so he’s got a lot of experience under his belt now. I am sure he has matured in their system with the spring practice (and) now fall camp behind him. He’s a nice player that throws the ball well, can move and can hurt you with his legs.”

NIU safety Dechane Durante is equally cautious.

“We aren’t going to look past them. Because of the success we had, every team is going to give us their best shot so we have to come to play,” Durante said. “Last year, Eastern Illinois came in here and gave us their best shot and almost stole it from us.”

Fans who attended that Sept. 21 home opener, when Eastern Illinois QB Jimmy Garoppolo and his Panthers briskly scored 20 points before many Huskie fans had found their seats, aren’t likely to forget.

Meanwhile, the players aren’t quick to forget how the 2013 season shockingly ended with back-to-back losses at the MAC Championship and the Poinsettia Bowl.

Akeem Daniels

Akeem Daniels

“Last season was a little bit of a disappointment because we went into those last two games a little unprepared and disoriented,” linebacker Ladell Fleming said. “Getting back on the field at home should be fun. We’ve been looking forward to it since our last game. I’ve had a sour taste in my mouth since we started spring ball into the summer.”

Also eager to return is Akeem Daniels, who missed the 2013 season to nurse a foot injury.

Daniels is among several running backs expected to shine this year; Carey also puts Joel Bouangnon, Jordan Huff, Draco Smith and Keith Harris Jr. on that pedestal.

“Akeem looks good,” Carey said. “Obviously not playing football for a year, he had some rust, but through the course of spring ball and fall camp, he has knocked it off. He has gotten hit. He has been bumped and bruised at times; he feels good that he has had those bumps and bruises. I would expect him to carry the bulk of the load just because he is so versatile.”

For more information on NIU football and Huskie athletics, visit www.niuhuskies.com.

Aug 25

Quarterbacks have plenty of talent to work with

DeKALB – Northern Illinois’ starting quarterback is still a question mark.

Aug 21

Huskies’ Brown liking time at wideout

DeKALB – Northern Illinois senior wide receiver Da’Ron Brown wasn’t exactly thrilled when he was told he would move from wide receiver to quarterback for his junior year at Chicago’s Morgan Park High School.

Aug 21

Brown liking time at wideout

DeKALB – Northern Illinois senior wide receiver Da’Ron Brown wasn’t exactly thrilled when he was told he would move from wide receiver to quarterback for his junior year at Chicago’s Morgan Park High School.

Aug 17


www.niuhuskies.com – USA+v+Ghana+2010+FIFA+World+Cup+Round+Sixteen+XgqxjrQ15f9l.jpg

As I’m sure most of you might have seen, last Thursday the 2014 World Cup in Brazil kicked off as the host nation took on Croatia and defeated the Vatreni, 3-1. With 11 games played over the weekend, much of the hype all weekend in the United States was the start of the Red, White and Blue’s World Cup campaign Monday versus Ghana at 4 p.m. Central. For those not familiar with U.S. Soccer, the contest is a rematch of the 2010 World Cup Round of 16 where Ghana defeated the “Yanks”, 2-1 in extra time.
What does the World Cup and U.S. Soccer have to do with #NIUSocialSummer? It’s really simple actually. NIU Athletics has two connections to the U.S. Soccer Federation, one current and one former.
Currently, NIU men’s soccer Associate Head Coach Garrett Biller is a scout in the United States Soccer Federation’s Development Academy where he performs player identification and training evaluations for U.S. Youth National Teams. 
In the former, NIU Hall of Famer Willy Roy, who served as the Head Coach of the men’s soccer program for 16 years between 1987 and 2002, played for the U.S. National Team between 1965 and 1973. In his time at NIU, Roy posted a 142-131-22 record and is the all-time leader in victories. Roy earned 20 caps (games played) for the United State’s, scoring 10 goals for the Red, White and Blue, the most by a U.S. Soccer player between 1973 and 2002. In honor of the United States Soccer Federation’s 100th anniversary, the 11 best players in federation history were selected. Though Roy was not named to the all-time XI, he did receive a vote for the squad. Roy is also a member of the U.S. Soccer Hall of Fame.
For more on Roy, take a peak at these articles below, including a photo gallery.
Photo Gallery (NASLJerseys.com)
Q&A w/Former MNT Forward Willy Roy (USsoccer.com) 
Career Highlights (USSoccerPlayers.com)
2011 NIU Athletics Hall of Fame Class Announced (NIUHuskies.com)

Aug 17


www.niuhuskies.com – Social Summer World Cup Flags (small).jpgWith the World Cup getting underway on Thursday in Brazil, it seemed like a good time for #NIUSocialSummer to take a look at Huskie Athletics’ international connections to this year’s World Cup competitors.  

Using the 2013-14 NIU rosters, EIGHT of the 31 World Cup countries outside of the U.S. are represented by 15 student-athletes from nine different Huskie programs.

The World Cup countries represented by Huskies (number of student-athletes in parens): France (4), England (3), Spain (2), Mexico (2), Croatia (1), Bosnia and Herzegovina (1), Germany (1), Columbia (1).

The Huskie programs with the most World Cup-affiliated students: Women’s Tennis (4), Men’s Tennis (3), Men’s Golf (2), Men’s Soccer (2), Women’s Cross Country/Track & Field (1), Women’s Golf (1), Women’s Soccer (1), Men’s Basketball (1).

And the complete list:
MBB –   Marin Maric (Croatia)   
MGolf – Raphael Denais & Pierrick Fillon (France)   
MSoccer – Richard Hall & Albert Levett (England)       
MTennis – Simon Formont (France), Carlos Manzanas (Spain), Jovan Zeljkovic  (Bosnia & Herzegovina)
WXC/TR – Juliane Totzke (Germany)
WGolf – Lena Gautier (France)
WSoccer – Amy Carr (England)
WTennis – Cristina Alvarez (Spain), Arantza de la Torre & Ilse Pacheco (Mexico), Maria Rozo (Colombia)

Of course, this is only a partial list of NIU’s international connections as student-athletes from Israel, Canada, Sweden, Norway, Zimbabwe and Jamaica will not be seeing their country’s team compete in Brazil.

Aug 17


www.niuhuskies.com – 13-IABB-CPC-1025-SW-07.jpg

To steal and paraphrase a line from Major League, “welcome, to another season of Northern Illinois baseball.”

The defending Mid-American Conference West Division Champion Huskies opened practice Friday, January 24 at the brand Chessick Practice Center, adjacent to the Yordon Center. It was the team’s first full practice at the facility.

Matt Gray of College Baseball Central, a former scout turned writer, came out from Woodstock, Ill. to take in the opening practice of the season, snap some photos and talk with a few players and coaches.

Gray has already written three articles on the Huskies, talking with Head Coach Ed Mathey, 2013 First Team All-MAC pitcher Eli Anderson and with various others about the first practice of the season.

All three stories are shared below:
Ed Mathey Focused on Pitching and Process for Northern Illinois (Jan. 22)
Eli Anderson: From the Shadows to the Spotlight for NIU (Jan. 23)
Northern Illinois University Opens New Facility, New Baseball Season (Jan. 24)

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