I recently had a brief conversation with NIU Associate Vice President and Director of Athletics Jeff Compher and here are a few of his comments. I don't think I'm talking out of school with any of this, just interesting comments.
I asked him about the rumors flying around the blogosphere awhile back about the MAC as a whole or individual MAC schools dropping down to FCS level for football and he said that's the most ridiculous thing he's ever heard. He was emphatic in his response and the question actually seemed to offend him a bit. I thought it was stupid too but I had to ask. Don't shoot the messenger!
He said NIU's goal is to be the first MAC BCS buster and everyone is on the same page in its pursuit. Sounds good to me, and Ball State showed us last year that it's not as farfetched as you may think. I would have loved to see them run the table last year just to make the case but at least they were in the conversation.
Like me he believes the Huskie football program is on the verge of great things and he had an interesting comment about the current team. He said some teams play hard because they fear for their playing time or the coaches kick their butts and some are on a mission because they believe in their coach. He said this Huskie team is in the latter category in that they absolutely love Jerry Kill. That's great to hear because if you can get a team to drink the kool-aid there is no limit to what they can achieve. And look what Coach Kill did at SIU, taking a team that was nearly dropped by the university to the heights of the FCS level in spite of terrible facilities. Not something just any coach can pull off.
There's still a little money owed on the Yordon Center so break out the checkbooks fans, let's get that taken care of so we can move on to the next thing. The next football facility priorities are the press box and the indoor practice facility, no surprise on either front. They have not yet determined how big the indoor practice facility will be. It depends on how many other sports they decide to accommodate with it. It will connect to the north side of the Yordon Center if its final design fits in that space. The pace of the future facilities plan depends on increasing the size of the season ticket base, makes sense.