Long weekend. Time to catch up on your Huskie news. Trying some new formatting and frequency with these posts so let me know if you have any feedback. Been reading a lot of other blogs and working behind the scenes on great things to come. Save the date: camp starts August 6th. Then things get interesting.
- Daily Chronicle write John Sahly releases his MAC Preseason Poll for all to see and he makes a few good points:
3. Northern Illinois
The 3-4-5 spots here are about as tight as they can be. NIU, Toledo or Ball State can easily take third. I'm giving the edge to the Huskies because they lose a lot less on defense than people think (the low number of returning starters on defense is wildly misleading because of the way NIU rotates) and unlike Ball State, the offense should take steps forward this season.
Yes, the rotating players on defense is one big reason NIU will be underrated on defense this year. This is something I will continue to stress and touch on as the season approaches.
New! coach! Tim! Beckman! has! people! excited! and! they! should! be! If you follow Beckman's Twitter feed you'll get that joke.
Haha that's some good stuff. He's got Temple as #1 in the East, which isn't a bad pick at all in division with a lot less depth than the West.
- CBS Sports ranks NIU as the 71st best team of this decade. Funny, I thought we would be higher considering that we've had a winning record every season sans the last two.
- Sticking with the same theme, Phil Steele writes in a recent blog that NIU has the 38th best home winning percentage of this decade with a 37-14 (72.5%) record, 2nd in the MAC behind Toledo. However, NIU is only 23-29 (44.2%) in away games during the same time period.
Over the entire decade from 2000-09, NIU accumulated a 61-47 (56.5%) record, which ranks 43rd out of all Division-I teams. And CBS is going to go and place the Huskies in the bottom half of their rankings? After this season, I could see us pushing our way in to the top 40. The only MAC schools with better records are 31. Toledo (61.8%) and 37. BGSU (58.3%)
- Chandler Harnish ranks as the #34 fantasy QB because of his abilities not only through the air, but on the ground, while the leading returning receiver for the Huskies Reed Cunningham rings in as the #42 TE
- Former Huskie and current free agent WR Justin McCareins is keeping his options for this upcoming season.
- Romeoville LB/RB prospect Cameron Stingily won't be making his decision to commit to a school anytime soon:
"I'm going to wait because I want to live the recruiting life and see how that goes," Stingily said. "You only get that chance once in your life. So, I want to get the full affect. I'm getting in shape for the best season of my high school career. This is the first year I've found out what hard work is."
He currently holds offers from NIU & EMU.
- Dekalb HS C Jordan Threloff gains yet another offer, this time the in-conference Ball State Cardinals.
- The Huskies continue to market their team heavily as Coach Kill will be in Aurora Saturday to sign autographs at the Adidas Outlet store. NIU also has a new deal with a new fancy marketing team in ISP Sports that will take us right through 2019.
- Men's Tennis coach Pawel Gajdzik leaves NIU after one year to take the head coaching job at Purdue. An odd move, considering he just pulled in the highest ranked mid-major recruiting class. Will those international players stay or will they go? Only time will tell.
- Sophomore volleyballer Kristin Hoffman will be participating in the Global Challenge in Croatia representing the US. You can follow the event here.
- Ohio St blog Eleven Warriors previews the Wisconsin Badgers.
- Speaking of the Badgers, backup CB Mario Goins is leaving UW because of academic issues.
- Matt Hinton previews the MAC, but doen't have much to say abut the Huskies other than they won't be bowl eligible somehow.
- Pigskin Press evaluates the coaching hot-seats in the MAC. KSU's Doug Martin is feeling the heat.
- Football Freak provides a no-frills MAC preview.
- Boise State blog OBNUG previews the Bowling Green Falcons...and the Miami Redhawks.
- The MAC Daily has their Soccer preview up.
- Mike Rasor of the Akron Beacon Journal previews the Temple Owls
- Rivals has a good story about how Akron pulled off the amazing signing of one of the best Center prospects in the country in 7-foot Zeke Marshall.
- FalconBlog calculates the run/pass ratios for each team in the MAC.
- Illinois HC Ron Zook can't coach if you weren't paying attention
- San Jose State dropped Arizona State to face the Wisconsin Badgers for a bigger payout for the 2010 season. That leaves the Sun-Devils scrambling to find a non-conference opponent. NIU already faces Iowa State & Illinois on the road that year, so this would be an unlikely scenario. Other possibilities are Ball State & Akron.
- Could the success of teams running the triple option make its way eventually to the MAC or Sun Belt conferences to compete with the big boys?
- Sun Belt teams are looking to avoid playing FCS teams in the future and want to schedule more games with MAC & C-USA opponents.
Odds and Ends
- IT'S FINALLY OVER!!! The other Ikegwuonu twin Jack who plays on the Eagles was finally acquitted of all charges from an arrest that happened in Dekalb WAY back in November 2006. Bill Ikegwuonu played for the NIU Football team at that point and the both of them were suspected of stealing an X-Box. I chronicled about the longevity of this 2 1/2 year ridiculous trial a while back.
- The Daily Chronicle asks "Should Dekalb invite tattoo parlors in?" I respond with a resounding YES. Punter Josh Wilber agrees with this as well.