Vanderbilt, the only Southeastern Conference football team ever to play in Huskie Stadium, will return Sept. 17, 2022, to DeKalb in the second half of a home-and-home series with the Northern Illinois University Huskies.
Sean T. Frazier, NIU associate vice president and director of Athletics, made the announcement Thursday.
The series with Vanderbilt will begin Sept. 27, 2019 when the Huskies visit Nashville for the first time since 1999. NIU and Vanderbilt played three times between 1994 and 1999 with the Commodores claiming all three meetings by the scores of 17-16 (Oct. 29, 1994), 17-7 (Oct. 11, 1997) and 34-31 (Sept. 11, 1999). The 1994 and 1999 contests were played at Vanderbilt, while the 1997 contest marks the only visit by an SEC team to Huskie Stadium.
Frazier said one of his goals in putting together the Huskies’ future football schedules has been to bring an SEC team to NIU.
“This is a series that all Huskie fans can get excited about,” Frazier said. “With the addition of Vanderbilt in 2022, NIU fans will see teams from the SEC, the Big Ten, the ACC and the Pac-12, as well as the American and Mountain West, in Huskie Stadium beginning as soon as next season. I’m happy with what we’ve been able to do with the football schedule, but I’m not satisfied. It is a work in progress and the job is never complete as far as I’m concerned.”
The SEC-MAC match-up is the latest home-and-home series announced by NIU during #SchedulePalooza Encore, the open week follow-up to four consecutive days of schedule announcements this summer.
SchedulePalooza Encore concludes Friday morning when NIU announces its final opponent of the week. In addition to today’s announcement of the Vanderbilt match-up, the Huskies unveiled Tuesday a home-and-home series with Tulsa in 2022 and 2023.