WNUR Predictions: NIU vs Northwestern
WNUR’s staff predict’s Saturday’s game, but only Greg Mroz was correct in predicting a Cal win. Will everyone else get their first win as NU is looking for theirs?
Greg Mroz (1-0) (@wizard_of_mroz):Northwestern 27, Northern Illinois 20. NIU’s run game is the best unit on the field, but their inability to throw downfield will allow NU’s defense to put 8 in the box and load up against the run game. Siemian will play better against DBs with less speed. Player to Watch: Justin Jackson.
Nick Scoliard (0-1) (@NickScols): Northwestern 34, Northern Illinois 24. NU will come out looking for a fight after their loss to Cal, and their offense will begin to take more and more shape. A Jordan Lynch-less NIU won’t be the challenge that Cal seemed to be, so I expect NU to get their first win on Saturday. Player to Watch: Cameron Dickerson. With Tony Jones out for the next two games, the work load falls on Dickerson to lead the receiving corps into NU’s new pro-style offense.
Michael Stern (0-1) (@michaeljstern23): Northwestern 38, Northern Illinois 31. Northwestern put together a solid second half against Cal after being surprised by the Bears’ two-quarterback system in the second half. Northern Illinois runs a quick offense (they managed to get off 109 plays against Presbyterian), which could be trouble for a Wildcat defense that lacks depth. However, the NU offensive line should have a size advantage against the mid-major Huskies. This looks like a shoot-out to me, and I think the inexperienced Huskies (no more Jordan Lynch) make a fatal mistake. Player to watch: Tommylee Lewis, Northern Illinois. Lewis is the type of electrifying wideout Northwestern has had trouble stopping in the past, to the tune of 1,071 total yards last year. He also runs the ball on reverses and returns kickoffs. NU must contain NIU’s game breaker to keep momentum on their side.