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Football to host ‘X’s and O’s with the Pros’ April 18

April 10, 2014
Garrett Wolfe

Garrett Wolfe

Ever wonder what it’s like to play on an NFL team? Want to hear what goes into putting together a college football game plan?

Or do you just want to get together with a group of guys and talk Huskie Football?

Well guys, this is the event for you.

On Friday, April 18, Northern Illinois University Athletics will hold the second annual “X’s and O’s with the Pros Men’s Football Clinic” from 5 to 9 p.m. in the Jeffrey and Kimberly Yordon Center.

NIU head football coach Rod Carey and staff will welcome current and former Huskies who bring an impressive list of football playing accomplishments that led to successful NFL careers.

Headlining the list of pros for the 2014 event is Super Bowl winning offensive tackle and 10-year NFL player Ryan Diem, and former Chicago Bears running back and Chicago native Garrett Wolfe. Sycamore product Jason Schepler, who was signed by the Tennessee Titans this offseason, will be on hand as will former NIU tight end Brad Cieslak, who played for the Buffalo Bills and Cleveland Browns during a four-year NFL career.

In addition, Dan Graham, an NIU center who played for the Tampa Bay Bucs in 1989, will offer a more “historical” perspective on the league. More pros might be added in the coming days.

Ryan Diem

Ryan Diem

The pros will visit with participants during the social portion of the program, which runs from 5 to 6 p.m. and includes a full buffet and refreshments provided by Buffalo Wild Wings. The pros will then participate in a Q&A session during one of five “break out” sessions.

Guests also will have a chance to go into meeting rooms with the Huskie football coaches and see a film breakdown of their positions, providing a true “insiders’ look” into college football.

Cost for the “Xs and Os with the Pros” clinic is $125.

In addition to the Buffalo Wild Wings food and beverages, a behind-the-scenes tour of the locker room and Chessick Practice Center, the breakout session and pre- and post-game speeches from Carey, attendees will receive a special and unique NIU Football-themed gift. There will also be a silent auction with exclusive memorabilia. Proceeds from the “X’s and O’s with the Pros” event benefit NIU Football.

In order to give every participant the best experience and one-on-one interaction, space is limited. Register now by calling the Huskie Athletic Fund at (815) 753-PACK (7225) or e-mail [email protected] for more information.

Don’t worry ladies, the NIU Football 101 Ladies Clinic will be back for the fifth consecutive year from 5 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, July 30, at the Yordon Center. as well as the NIU Huskies Facebook page will have complete information closer to that date.

Jason Schepler

Jason Schepler

Make plans now to attend the 2014 Huskie Bowl at 3 p.m. Saturday, April 19. Admission is free. The final spring football scrimmage will split the Huskies into Cardinal and Black squads to battle for spring dominance.

Prior to the game, be sure to come out to get a taste of “The Yard,” the new official tailgate area of NIU Football, located on the West Lawn of Huskie Stadium.

NIU Football 2014 football season tickets are on sale now. A season ticket for all five 2014 Huskie home games, including the season opener Thursday, Aug. 28; the Saturday,Oct. 11, Homecoming game; and the MAC West rivalry game versus Toledo on Tuesday, Nov. 11, is just $110 for the general public and $95 for NIU faculty and staff, NIU Alumni Association members and senior citizens.

Season tickets can be ordered online, by phone at (815) 753-PACK (7225) or in person at the NIU Convocation Center Ticket Office in DeKalb.

For more information on NIU football and Huskie athletics, visit