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NIU football team meets Chicago media

July 28, 2011

Photo of an NIU Huskie football helmet at Soldier FieldAlmost 24 hours after visiting with local and national media at Detroit’s Ford Field as part of MAC Media Day, Northern Illinois University head football coach Dave Doeren and members of the Huskie football team were at Soldier Field for NIU’s annual Chicago Media Day Wednesday.

Doeren and seven members of the 2011 NIU football team – Chandler Harnish, Jasmin Hopkins, Rashaan Melvin, Trevor Olson, Sean Progar, Pat Schiller and Scott Wedige – met with a throng of media from the Chicagoland area to preview the upcoming season and the team’s Sept. 17 match up with Wisconsin at the historic venue.

“Soldier Field is a place we call home once a year,” Doeren said. “We play Wisconsin here in the third week of the season. Our players here today have been looking out at the field since they got here. I hope every one of them is picturing themselves making great plays.

“One of the things that attracted me to NIU was its relationship to Chicago. We have so many alumni that live here and we’re trying to bring our product to them. We look forward to that opportunity. We hope the city embraces it and comes out and supports our players.”

While much of the press conference focused on the team and upcoming season, the media in attendance were just as interested in this summer’s weekly webisode series “Doeren Discovers” on, which chronicled the first-year head coach’s adventures in Chicago and surrounding suburbs.

“It was a pretty fun experience,” he said. “We’ve been out and about and done a lot of different things. Hopefully, we got the attention of some people. The whole goal was this, and I told our players, I’ll fight for them to get everybody in the stands. They’ve got to fight for the fans and put the best product possible on the field.”

The Northern Illinois football team reports to camp Wednesday, Aug. 3, with the first practice scheduled for Thursday, Aug. 4. The Huskies open the 2011 campaign Saturday, Sept. 3, when NIU welcomes the Black Knights of Army to Huskie Stadium.

Tickets for the 2011 Northern Illinois football season are on sale now through the NIU Athletics Ticket Office in the Convocation Center and online at

Season tickets for all six Huskie football home games are available for just $99 for the general public and $88 for NIU faculty and staff, senior citizens, NIU Alumni Association and Varsity Club members. Season tickets provide a 33 percent discount compared to single game ticket prices, and season ticket holders still receive a $15 discount off the purchase of an equal number of tickets to Soldier Field Showdown II.

Three-game mini-plans are also available for just $50 each with customers allowed to choose their own games.

Northern Illinois fans can also purchase tickets to Soldier Field Showdown II, the Sept. 17 game between NIU and Wisconsin at Chicago’s Soldier Field. Tickets to the game are $90, $75 and $60 and can be purchased online at or

For more information on NIU season tickets or Soldier Field Showdown II tickets, call (815) 753-1923 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. For more information on NIU football and Huskie athletics, visit