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Men’s basketball plans special recognitions during Saturday afternoon Alumni Day game

February 16, 2011

Photo of basketball going through hoopThe Northern Illinois men’s basketball team will host its annual Alumni Day festivities Saturday, Feb. 19, prior to NIU’s home game against Seattle University. The alumni game will be played at 12:30 p.m.

NIU will honor Huskie great Billy Harris while also hosting American Red Cross Day/Blood Drive and “Take a Kid to the Game Day.”

Gates for the alumni game will open at noon; a ticket for the men’s basketball game is required for entrance. Former NIU men’s basketball players will also be honored at halftime of the 3 p.m. contest against Seattle.

Confirmed alumni returning include Carl Amato, Burton Anderson, Bruce Boardman, Wayne Boeckelman, Chris Coleman, Phiffaney Dukes, Bill Finucane, Norval Galloway, Ron May, Mike McKinney, Randy Norman, John Olson, Walter Owens, Ben Rand, Alan Rayhorn, Jeremy Roach, Benjamin Ross, John Scott, Al Sewasciuk, Sean Smith, Michael Taylor, Alan Tebockhorst, Walter Thompson, Shawn Thrower, Donald Westlake, Donald Whiteside, Andre Williams and Jerry Williams.

Prior to the game against Seattle, Northern Illinois Athletics will recognize former Huskie great Billy Harris.

Harris, an NIU Athletics Hall of Famer and All-Century Team member, starred at NIU from 1970-73. As a junior, Harris was a member of the Huskie squad that upset fifth-ranked Indiana and cracked the AP Top 20 for the only time in school history. During his senior season, Harris was named an Honorable Mention All-America by Basketball Weekly. He finished his NIU career with 1,331 points, ninth on the Huskie career scoring list.

Harris was selected by the Chicago Bulls in the 1973 NBA Draft and played in the ABA with the San Diego Conquistadors. In December of 1988, Slam Magazine called him “The Greatest Playground Baller Ever.” Harris died last January after suffering a massive stroke. He was 58.

Along with the Alumni Day activities, NIU will host American Red Cross Day; the Red Cross will receive $1 from each ticket sold at the game. The Red Cross also will sponsor a blood drive from 1 to 5 p.m.

Saturday also is “Take a Kid to the Game Day,” with a free lower bowl youth ticket being provided with the purchase of any adult lower bowl ticket.

Tickets can be ordered online, on the phone at (815) 752-6800 or in person at the NIU Convocation Center Ticket Office.

For more information on NIU  men’s basketball or Huskie athletics, visit