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NIU News: Orange Bowl Eve (12/31/12) Edition

News and Notes for the Northern Illinois Huskies as they enter the Orange Bowl tomorrow.


I am on my way to Miami this afternoon. What are your plans for New Year's Eve? Make sure to head to the stadium early tomorrow for some serious tailgating as well.

Local coverage:

Daily Chronicle | Sunshine State of mind for NIU students

Huskie Wire | Former Huskies players, coaches reunite

Huskie Wire | NIU players make visit to Baptist Children's Hospital


Huskie Wire | Orange Bowl highlights FSU's return to prominence


Wouldn't it be terrific in 2013 if . . . - South Florida
Wouldn'tit be nice if all of this could happen?

Florida State defenders very impressed with NIU QB Jeffrey Lynch - Tomahawk Nation
After NIU QB Jeffrey Jordan Lynch trash talked Florida State's defense, senior linebacker Vince Williams asked some of FSU's better defenders about how they felt about the QB.

Florida State Orange Bowl quotes 12/30 - Tomahawk Nation
Florida State Orange Bowl quotes 12/30

College football: Madison native Rod Carey leads Northern Illinois into Orange Bowl : Sports
Rod Carey had been celebrating Northern Illinois’ Mid-American Conference championship for less than 36 hours when he got the news.

Orange Bowl: Northern Illinois will have its hands full stopping Florida State QB EJ Manuel -
Trying to stop Florida State quarterback EJ Manuel will be a priority for Northern Illinois in the orange Bowl.

Orange Bowl 2013: Northern Illinois rides the roller coaster to a BCS bowl - SB Nation Tampa Bay
After losing their season opener, the Huskies overcame multiple adversities to reach the Orange Bowl

Manuel has more on mind that just Orange Bowl - Lowell Sun Online
MIAMI -- When quarterback EJ Manuel takes the Orange Bowl field Tuesday for his final game at Florida State, his mother will be home in Virginia, recovering from her final round of chemotherapy to treat breast cancer.

NIU, Florida State football seek legitimacy, but for different reasons - Chicago Sun-Times
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Everybody has issues. After all the clamor about whether Northern Illinois belongs in the Orange Bowl, the Huskies know it’s up to them to prove they’re worthy against Florida State on Tuesday. ‘‘It is important,’’ NIU athletic director Jeff Compher said.

NIU needs to limit big plays from FSU - Northern Star Online: Sports
While the Huskies come out of the MAC, which is known for explosive, high-powered offenses that can light up the scoreboard, they will face their biggest test in Florida State on New Year's Day.

Video: Northern Illinois' Jordan Lynch - Chicago Colleges Blog - ESPN Chicago
Northern Illinois quarterback Jordan Lynch sets the record straight regarding his comments about Florida State's defense, and talks about the Discover

Jordan Lynch is a major reason for NIU's successful season
NIU quarterback Jordan Lynch is the primary reason his team is in the 2013 Orange Bowl. He has earned the respect of his coaches as well as opposing coaches with his play.

Northern Illinois dual-threat QB Jordan Lynch a ‘tough kid’... |
Northern Illinois quarterback Jordan Lynch said he’s not scared of Florida State. But maybe the Seminoles, who face the Huskies in Tuesday night’s Orange Bowl at Sun Life Stadium, should be a little afraid of Lynch.

Northern Illinois Lynch is unfazed at not fitting mold | College Sports - The News Tribune
MIAMI - Let's not start talking about Northern Illinois quarterback Jordan Lynch with the legs that ran for 1,771 yards, an NCAA record for a quarterback, or the right arm that threw for 2,962 yards and 24 touchdowns this season.

Northern Illinois, MAC see recruiting boost with BCS berth - ESPN
What’s one sign of a program on the rise? How about when it goes through a coaching change and its top commitment -- who has a BCS offer -- does

Huskies need to be aggressive - Northern Star Online: Columns
While former NIU head coach Dave Doeren has been gone for nearly a month, there are still many things to take away from his style of coaching.

Young Huskies gain valuable experience - Northern Star Online: Sports
While getting a BCS berth has certainly panned out to be one of the best ways to send out the winningest senior class in NIU history, it helps the returning players as well.

Secondary will play large role in bowl game - Northern Star Online: News
NIU football has not faced a ranked team this season. It has not faced a team that has the playmaking ability on either side of the ball like Florida State has.

Huskies plan for Manuel - Northern Star Online: Sports
For some teams, game planning for a dual-threat, mobile quarterback can be a challenge. However, this will not be the case for NIU's defense.

2013 Orange Bowl picks and predictions: Experts giving Northern Illinois a chance - SB Nation Chicago
Several national writers are giving underdog Northern Illinois a chance to stay competitive against Florida State in the Orange Bowl.

Local players thrilled about South Florida homecoming with Northern Illinois - South Florida
Northern Illinois' unexpected BCS berth in the 2013 Discover Orange Bowl means a homecoming for six NIU players from South Florida, including four who went to high school in Broward and Palm Beach counties

Northern Illinois students Miami Orange Bowl -
The hundreds of students assembled at Northern Illinois University's Convocation Center on Sunday were dressed in sweats and winter hats, but their suitcases held the promise of what's to come in the next few days -- NIU spirit wear, club attire for many, and plenty of swimsuits.

Northern Illinois Huskies stick to familiar bowl routine - Colleges -
With the long break and unfamiliar locale, New Year’s Day bowl game preparation confounds many a coach. This is Northern Illinois first BCS bowl, but it has its routine down from its four previous bowl trips in the past four years.

Northern Illinois isn't the first unlikely team to reach a BCS game - college football - ESPN
Northern Illinois' standout quarterback, Jordan Lynch, is confident his underdog team can win the Discover Orange Bowl against Florida State. Do the Huskies really belong? While there might be ample holes in their resume, they are hardly the worst team ever selected to play in a BCS bowl game.

Northern Illinois star takes shot at FSU defense | Pensacola News Journal |
FSU's players were practicing Thursday when Northern Illinois quarterback Jordan Lynch's explosive comments hit the Twittersphere. According to the Sporting News, Lynch said the Seminoles had not seen anything like the Huskies' high-powered offense:

Orange Bowl Betting Preview: Northern Illinois Huskies vs. Florida State Seminoles
The Orange Bowl is the last game on the board on New Year

Orange Bowl 2013 picks and predictions: Florida State-Northern Illinois matchup producing mixed opinions - SB Nation Tampa Bay
Despite their status as a heavy favorite, the Seminoles are not being embraced by college football experts.

Florida State must prepare for tough Northern Illinois QB Jordan Lynch -
Florida State will have to prepare these next two days for Northern Illinois quarterback Jordan Lynch from more than a schematic standpoint. Across the rest of the weekend, they'll have to steady themselves for his toughness and gritty determinism. He does more than talk.

Memo to Northern Illinois: Let your play do the talking, not your mouth! | Chicago Sports Fan Talk

Northern Illinois vs. FSU: Huskies' linebacker commemorates Orange Bowl trip with tattoo - SB Nation Chicago
For Northern Illinois Victor Jacques, a trip to the Orange Bowl also provided an opportunity to get a new tattoo. The Miami native had the city's skyline inked on his left arm, along with an Orange Bowl logo.

Florida State vs. Northern Illinois Orange Bowl preview - College Football - Pete Thamel -
Florida State vs. Northern Illinois Orange Bowl preview: EJ Manuel and the Seminoles will overwhelm Jordan Lynch and the Huskies.

Tony Pauline's Draft Watch: Orange Bowl - Video - Video NFL Draft Analyst Tony Pauline explains what the NFL scouts will be looking for in the Orange Bowl between Florida State and Northern Illinois.

Orange Bowl 2013: A homecoming for several Northern Illinois players - SB Nation Chicago
The Orange Bowl will serve as a homecoming for several Northern Illinois players with South Florida ties. 11 Huskies are from the state overall, including six from the Miami area.

Coaching shake-ups affect both FSU, NIU
Coaching changes have staffs from both FSU and NIU handling new responsibilities.

Rod Carey went from positional coach to head man at NIU in a blur - college football - ESPN
Rod Carey will make his head coaching debut when he leads Northern Illinois into the Orange Bowl. No, not even he can believe the opportunity came this quickly, Adam Rittenberg writes.

Schools such as NIU will become regulars in a top-tier bowl - Chicago Sun-Times
MIAMI SHORES, Fla. — You can agree or disagree with college football analyst Kirk Herbstreit’s rant that Northern Illinois didn’t deserve a BCS bowl slot. "Thank goodness we’re moving to a new system in 2014,’’ Herbstreit said, lamenting NIU’s Orange Bowl slot. But if Herbstreit,

Florida State’s E.J. Manuel aims to win fourth bowl for ailing mom - Chicago Sun-Times
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Jackie Manuel won’t be at Sun Life Stadium on New Year’s night. She won’t be able to attend the Orange Bowl, her son E.J.’s final game as the starting quarterback at Florida State. Instead, she’ll be back in Virginia Beach, Va.,

NIU in Miami: Orange Bowl Trip Days Three and Four - Northern Illinois Official Athletic Site
The days have started to run together for the Northern Illinois team and official travel party as day three quickly blended into day four as more and more Northern Illinois fans arrived in South Florida.

Moore aims for the history books - Northern Star Online: Sports
Senior wide receiver Martel Moore has put together one of the best statistical seasons in wide receiver history at NIU.

Bowers awaits opportunity - Northern Star Online: Sports
The running back situation for NIU football has been part of an ongoing evolution all season long.

Huskies have talents beyond Lynch - Northern Star Online: Sports
Junior quarterback Jordan Lynch has been the face of NIU football, the MAC conference and of every mid-major Heisman hopeful all season long.

NIU wants to start strong in bowl game - Northern Star Online: News
NIU football is looking to make a statement early on in its Orange Bowl tilt with Florida State.

Can Seminoles stop Huskies' run game? - Northern Star Online: Sports
Something is going to have to give in this matchup on New Year's Day between NIU and Florida State.

Northern Illinois' defense poses threat with tackles for loss and sacks | College Sports - The News Tribune
MIAMI - Northern Illinois' defense didn't return a fumble or interception for a touchdown this season nor did it come up with a safety. When the Huskies defense comes up with big plays, it's in terms of tackles for loss, in which they were n...

Northern Illinois wants to serve notice against favored Florida State |
Ah, the legendary tradition-heavy names that have built the Orange Bowl status ... Joe Namath ... Texas ... Nebraska ... Julius Ceasar W atts ... Bernie Kosar, Michael Irvin, Melvin Bratton and all those men of The U.

Orange Bowl: Florida State-Northern Illinois
Can Florida State keep Jordan Lynch and Northern Illinois from pulling an upset in the Orange Bowl?

Orange Bowl Preview: Florida State vs. Northern Illinois -- Analysis, TV info -
No. 16 Northern Illinois is the first MAC team to ever earn a spot in a BCS bowl. The Huskies will try to prove they belong against No. 13 Florida State.

Florida State to see a confident Northern Illinois team in Orange Bowl -
Florida State will go up against a Northern Illinois team that is confident its defense will be able to hold its own against the allegedly bigger, faster, stronger Seminoles defense. These and more links here.

New WR Coach

NIU hires Thad Ward to coach receivers -
Rod Carey hires Thad Ward

Ward to Join NIU Football Staff as Receivers Coach - Northern Illinois Official Athletic Site
MIAMI - Thad Ward, who has coached at the high school and collegiate level in Florida, spent six years coaching in Illinois and became familiar with the Mid-American Conference at Western Michigan in 2012, will join the Northern Illinois coaching staff following the Discover Orange Bowl, NIU Head Coach Rod Carey announced Saturday.