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Are you ready for some football?

August 28, 2012

NIU Huskies footballThe 2012 football season kicks off Saturday, Sept. 1, as NIU hosts the University of Iowa for Soldier Field Showdown III.

The Huskies return 16 seniors from their spectacular 2011 season, in which they won the MAC Championship and the Bowl.

Kickoff is at 2:30 p.m. Gates open at 12:30 p.m.

Huskie fans are invited to join in the festivities and be a part of the excitement that is the Soldier Field Showdown.

Fans signing up for 2013 Alumni Association membership at any event during the weekend will receive a free Soldier Field Showdown III T-shirt.

Registration for Soldier Field weekend is available online.

A list of events associated with the game include:

5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 31

Kick off the Soldier Field Showdown weekend in style!

The festivities begin Friday night with an exclusive cocktail reception at Millennium Park Rooftop Terrace. Huskie fans and alumni will gather for live entertainment, great food and a beautiful view of the city’s famous skyline.

Tickets are $40 per person, including a buffet of Chicago-style foods from Goose Island, beer, wine, soda and entertainment.

Attire for this event is “spirited” business casual.

8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 31

NIU Athletics will host the official pep rally for NIU fans and alumni at Kitty O’Shea’s authentic Irish pub, located within the Chicago Hilton. Former Student-Athletes, NIU Fans and alumni can enjoy a bit of old Ireland at this free event for NIU fans the evening before Solider Field Showdown lll.

11 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 1

The official pregame tailgate for NIU alumni, friends, and Huskie fans will be held on the Soldier Field Stadium Green, southeast side of the stadium, and will feature live entertainment, stadium concessions and plenty of Huskie spirit. The NIU academic colleges will be represented, along with NIU Alumni Association affinity groups and DeKalb/Sycamore businesses.

Visit the University Relations tent for a free NIU T-shirt to show support of the Huskies.


Tickets to Soldier Field Showdown III are priced at $60 (upper level seats), $70 (lower level and midfield) and $80 (club seats). Fans will be able to designate their fan affiliation to be seated on the appropriate side of the stadium.

And, thanks to a promotional opportunity with NIU radio partner 670 The Score in Chicago, Northern Illinois and the University of Iowa are offering fans a chance to attend the Showdown for just $30 per ticket through the new Score Four ticket pack.


Metra has added one outbound train on the Union Pacific/West Line and one on the BNSF Railway. Both depart Chicago at 6:35 p.m.


NIU fans staying in Chicago for the game are encouraged to stay at the Swissôtel, NIU’s official hotel for Soldier Field Showdown III.


Can’t make it to Chicago for the big game? The NIU Alumni Association’s regional chapters are hosting watch parties in select cities across the country. More information is available online.

Additionally, Fatty’s Pub & Grille in DeKalb – the official pre- and post-game headquarters of NIU athletics – is hosting a gameday watch party, beginning at 2:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 1.

For more information on NIU football and Huskie athletics, visit