Just one year ago, the Northern Illinois Huskies clinched a BCS bowl berth and they looked like the next small conference hero. With a Heisman-worthy quarterback behind center, it looks like the Huskies have what it takes to make another run at a coveted BCS game.
On the other side of the field, the Western Michigan Broncos have had a very forgettable season thus far. With just one win on the season and one game remaining against a very tough opponent, it’s not too farfetched to think that the Broncos will finish the season 1-11.
Northern Illinois is led by a talented quarterback by the name Jordan Lynch and he just happens to be in the Heisman race — if not, he has to be. He is completing about 65 percent of his passes for 2,418 with 21 yards and also leads the team in rushing with 1,434 yards and 17 scores — accounting for an impressive 38 touchdowns on the season. Cameron Stingily is right behind him with 958 yards on the ground with nine scores. Tommylee Lewis leads the team in receptions by a wide margin, 74, to go along with 623 yards and three touchdowns.
Western Michigan has not had the season that a first-year coach would hope for, but the Broncos have a lone bright spot on their team that sticks out above the rest. Although he is still young and unproven, freshman quarterback Zach Terrell has 1,463 yards and eight touchdowns on the season while completing 53 percent of his passes. While he hasn’t been overwhelmingly impressive, the freshman is sure to be the future of the program. Corey Davis has also been a standout at wide receiver with 913 yards and six touchdowns on 64 catches.
Defensively, the Huskies are not an easy squad to score on. Northern Illinois ranks 46th in the nation in points per game as well as 67th in the nation in yards allowed per game. Western Michigan ranks 109th in points allowed per game to go along with a more impressive 70th in yards allowed per game.
Western Michigan will travel to Northern Illinois to take on the Huskies at 7 p.m. EST on Tuesday, Nov. 26. The game will be broadcasted on ESPN 2.
PREDICTION: Western Michigan 17, Northern Illinois 42