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The NFL preseason capped off its third week this weekend with several former Huskies making good impressions before Friday's final roster cutdown.

QB Chandler Harnish - Indianapolis Colts
Harnish played the entire second half Saturday afternoon in the Indianapolis Colts' 30-17 loss against the Washington Redskins, finishing the day 12-of-19 passing for 147 yards. Among the 2011 Vern Smith Leadership Award recipient's highlights were a 59-yard completion to Jeremy Ross that set up one touchdown, along with directing a second scoring drive midway through the fourth quarter. Through three games, Harnish is 18-of-31 passing for 244 yards with one touchdown and one interception.

LB Larry English - San Diego Chargers
English recorded his best game yet of the 2012 preseason, posting two sacks along with two additional tackles in the San Diego Chargers' 12-10 win against the Minnesota Vikings. With Minnesota driving inside Charger territory late in the first quarter, English got into the backfield and sacked Christian Ponder for a 10-yard loss to knock the Vikings out of field goal territory. His next sack of Ponder came with less than two minutes left in the first half and Minnesota with a first and goal at the 10-yard line. The six-yard loss eventually resulted in the Vikings settling for a field goal.

RB Michael Turner - Atlanta Falcons
Turner played a big part in the Atlanta Falcons' 23-6 win against the Miami Dolphins Friday, posting 10 carries for 35 yards and three catches for 36 yards. His two biggest plays came on receptions, as a 20-yard reception helped set up Atlanta's first points of the game, while a 11-yard catch in the second quarter resulted in another field goal that proved to be the deciding points of the game.

OL Doug Free - Dallas Cowboys
Free started on the offensive line for the Dallas Cowboys in their 20-19 win against the St. Louis Rams. The former NIU lineman helped pave the way for a resurgent Cowboy offense, as all 20 of the team's points came in the first half.

DB Tracy Wilson - Tennessee Titans
Wilson got playing time on defense and special teams in Tennessee's 32-27 win against Arizona, recording two tackles in the fourth quarter.

WR Nathan Palmer - San Francisco 49ers
Palmer got on the field in the San Francisco 49ers' 29-24 win against the Denver Broncos. Yet, he did not record any stats.

C Scott Wedige - Arizona Cardinals
Wedige got in on special teams during the Cardinals' 32-27 loss to the Tennessee Titans. However, he did not record any stats on the evening.

LB Pat Schiller - Atlanta Falcons
Schiller got on the field for a handful of plays in the Atlanta Falcons' 23-6 win against the Miami Dolphins. The former Huskie, though, did not record any stats.

WR Landon Cox - Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Cox saw playing time on offense and on special teams in Tampa Bay's 30-28 win against the New England Patriots Friday, but did not get any passes thrown his way.

NOTE: Fullback Cameron Bell was released Monday by the San Francisco 49ers in the first round of roster reductions. Teams were required to have a 75-man active roster by Monday at 3 p.m. CT

The final week of the preseason will feature one nationally-televised game with an NIU alum, as Scott Wedige looks to secure a roster spot Thursday night when the Arizona Cardinals host the Denver Broncos at 10 p.m. on NFL Network.

For the full Week Four schedule, click here.


The first full week of the NFL preseason is in the books, so here is a quick recap of how the former Huskies did over the weekend.

QB Chandler Harnish - Indianapolis Colts
Harnish went 3-for-3 passing for 52 yards and a touchdown, while playing the entire fourth quarter under center in the Colts' 38-3 win over the St. Louis Rams. With a first and 10 at the St. Louis 33-yard line, the 2011 Vern Smith Leadership Award winner lofted a pass down the left sideline to Jeremy Ross to help put Indianapolis up 35-3. To watch the video of that touchdown pass, click here.

WR Nathan Palmer - San Francisco 49ers
Palmer continued his impressive training camp in San Francisco with three receptions for 21 yards as the 49ers topped the Minnesota Vikings, 17-6. His first catch of the night - a five-yard pass from Colin Kaepernick - helped set up a San Francisco field goal early in the third quarter. Later on, Palmer's receptions of 13 and three yards helped get the 49ers inside the redzone before a turnover ended the drive.

WR Britt Davis - New England Patriots
Davis caught a three-yard touchdown pass Thursday in what proved to be the winning points in New England's 7-6 win against the New Orleans Saints. On a first and goal, Davis found an opening in the Saints' defense and hauled in a strike from Brian Hoyer for the score. To see the highlight, click here

LB Larry English - San Diego Chargers
English had a great performance Thursday night, as he recorded a sack and a QB hurry in San Diego's 21-13 win against the Green Bay Packers. The former Huskie defensive end came around the corner late in the second quarter and sacked Graham Harrell for a four-yard loss. However, a penalty on San Diego during the play erased the yardage lost.

RB Michael Turner - Atlanta Falcons
Turner ran the ball five times for 17 yards in limited action during Atlanta's 31-17 loss to the Baltimore Ravens. The former Huskies gained nine yards on three carries in the Falcons' opening drive, which ended on a touchdown. Turner recorded two more carries of two and six yards, respectively, before giving way to the second-team offense.

OL Doug Free - Dallas Cowboys
Free started on the offensive line for the Dallas Cowboys Monday night in their hard-fought 3-0 victory against the Oakland Raiders.

C Scott Wedige - Arizona Cardinals
Wedige has seen extensive playing time in both of the Cardinals preseason games this year at center. Arizona has dropped both of their games so far, losing to the New Orleans
Saints, 17-10, in the Hall of Fame Game and on Friday to the Kansas City Chiefs, 27-17.

LB Pat Schiller - Atlanta Falcons
Schiller recorded two solo tackles Thursday in Atlanta's 31-17 loss against the Baltimore Ravens. His first stop came early in the third quarter when he stuffed Ben Rainey for a three-yard pickup, while his second tackle stopped Damien Berry for two yards late in the third quarter.

FB Cameron Bell- San Francisco 49ers
Bell saw action in San Francisco's 17-6 win against the Minnesota Vikings, but did not record any stats.

WR Landon Cox - Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Cox saw playing time in Tampa Bay's 20-7 win against the Miami Dolphins Friday. However, he did not record any receptions.

DB Tracy Wilson - Tennessee Titans
After being released by the New York Jets earlier in the week, Wilson signed Wednesday with the Titans and did not see any action in Tennessee's 27-17 loss to the Seattle Seahawks.

Six former Huskies will be featured on national TV this week. Michael Turner and Pat Schiller play Thursday on Fox when the Atlanta Falcons host the Cincinnati Bengals at 7 p.m. Meanwhile, you can catch Chandler Harnish on NBC's Sunday Night Football when the Indianapolis Colts take on the Pittsburgh Steelers at 7 p.m.. Additionally, the Dallas Cowboys (Doug Free) and San Diego Chargers (Larry English) face off Saturday at 8 p.m., while Britt Davis takes the field Monday night for the New England Patriots' ESPN contest with the Philadelphia Eagles. 

For the full Week Two schedule, click here.


Wedige_Cardinals.JPGNFL training camps are now in full gear, which means that football season is just around the corner. This year, 12 former Huskies are in training camps, including five from last season's MAC Championship squad.

QB Chandler Harnish (Indianapolis), WR Nathan Palmer (San Francisco), C Scott Wedige (Arizona), LB Pat Schiller (Atlanta) and FB Cameron Bell (San Francisco) will try to join RB Michael Turner (Atlanta), WR Britt Davis (New England), LB Larry English (San Diego), OT Doug Free (Dallas), CB Chris Smith (St. Louis) and CB Tracy Wilson (New York Jets) as Huskies in the NFL. Meanwhile, WR Landon Cox will also get an opportunity to catch on in the league, as he was signed by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers earlier this week.

Huskie fans will also get to see a familiar face on the field in the first preseason game of the year Sunday night, as Wedige and the Arizona Cardinals take on the New Orleans Saints in the NFL Hall of Fame Game in Canton, Ohio.

The game kicks off at 7 p.m. CT on NFL Network. Fans can also follow the action live on The contest will also feature 2012 Hall of Fame inductees Jack Butler, Dermotti Dawson, Chris Doleman, Cortez Kennedy, Curtis Martin and Willie Roaf, all of whom will be formally inducted the night before.

For the full NFL preseason schedule to see when the other NIU alums are in action, click here.


Harnish-Shrine.jpgFive Northern Illinois University football players, Chandler Harnish, Scott Wedige, Trevor Olson and linebackers Jordan Delegal and Pat Schiller, played one last college game over the weekend as the quintet participated in three different all-star games this past weekend.  

Harnish was voted team captain and started for the West team in the East-West Shrine Game in St. Petersburg, Fla. Saturday. The 2011 Vern Smith Award winner threw for 52 yards on 8-of-14 passing, while rushing for nine yards on five carries including a one-yard touchdown run in the second quarter. The West team won the contest, 24-17. Harnish received praise from a few NFL scouts in attendance for his arm strength and leadership skills. Many feel he is worth a draft pick.
As Harnish's game was winding down, another was getting started. The NFLPA Collegiate Bowl featured a trio of Huskies as Wedige and Schiller were members of the American squad, while Olson suited up for the National team. Olson has bragging rights over his two former teammates as the National team won, 20-14.

Delegal, who arguably had the best day of all the Huskies, took part in the Battle of Florida. A member of the victorious North squad coached by Florida State legend Bobby Bowden, Delegal had seven tackles, including a tackle for loss, and a 29-yard interception return. The North won the contest in dominating fashion, 51-3.


All-Star Game Picture.jpgFive Huskies have one more college game to play as quarterback Chandler Harnish, center Scott Wedige, tackle Trevor Olson and linebackers Pat Schiller and Jordan Delegal are participating in three college all-star games Saturday, Jan. 21, 2012.

Harnish was named team captain and will start for the West team of the East-West Shrine Game. The game, which will be played at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla., will be televised by the NFL Network. Kickoff is set for 3 p.m. CT. Harnish, the 2011 recipient of the Vern Smith Leadership Award, earned Most Valuable Player honors in NIU's 38-20 victory over Arkansas State in the 2012 Bowl. Here's a feature on NIU quarterback Chandler Harnish in the Fort Wayne News Sentinel.

A trio of Huskies, Olson, Schiller and Wedige, will be playing in the AstroTurf NFLPA Collegiate Bowl in Los Angeles, Calif. Wedige and Schiller will be teammates for at least one more game as they will be playing for the American team, while Olson will be playing for the National squad. The game will be played at the Home Depot Center in Southern California and will kick off at 5 p.m. CT and will be televised by NBC Sports Network.

Delegal, a native of Miami, Fla., is playing for the North team in the Battle of Florida. The game, which will be kickoff at 7 p.m. CT, will be televised live by Fox College Sports. The game features players that are draft eligible and have either been born in Florida or have played high school or college football in Florida. Former Florida State head coach Bobby Bowden will coach the North.

All-Star Game Line Up
East-West Shrine, 3 p.m. CT, NFL Network

AstroTurf NFLPA Collegiate Bowl, 5 p.m. CT, NBC Sports Network (formerly Versus)

The Battle of Florida, 7 p.m. CT., Fox College Sports


Dave-Doeren-8.jpgThere were a slew of features on NIU players and coaches posted the last two weeks. Enjoy!

Dave Doeren, Doeren's first season at NIU a big success

Matt Canada
Rockford Register Star, New boss same as old boss for NIU offense

Jimmie Ward
Daily Chronicle, Home sweet home for Ward

Jordan Delegal
Daily Chronicle, Conversion complete for NIU linebacker

Pat Schiller
Press Register, Northern Illinois' Pat Schiller stepped up big at linebacker

Sean Evans
Northwest Florida Daily News, Former FWB standout Evans enjoys 'homecoming' with NIU

Community service visit in Mobile
Fox TV, Huskies talk to troubled juveniles

Bowl feature, Huskies hope bowl wait is worth it


NIU Football Team Running Out.jpgThere have been a plethora of stories the last few days in the area newspapers featuring the NIU football team. Below, you'll find links to all the stories in the Chicago Tribune, Sun-Times, Daily Herald, Beacon News and Rockford Register Star.

Chicago Tribune
Army Preview

Chandler Harnish Feature

Daily Herald
Scott Wedige on NIU's Desire to Win a MAC Championship

Huskie Running Game Feature

How the Huskies Will Handle the Triple Option

Coach Doeren, a Big Boxing Fan, Lists his Favorite Fighters

Beacon News
A Trio of Geneva H.S. Alumns on the NIU Roster

Register Star
Rashaan Melvin Feature


Schiller-Pat-2010-007.jpgLindsey Willhite of the Daily Herald was out at football practice yesterday afternoon, so be on the look out for a few NIU football stories down the road. To tide you over til then, Willhite posted this item on his blog listing all the local area products on the Huskie roster.


Yesterday was Chicago Media Day for the NIU football team. First-year head coach Dave Doeren and several Huskies were at Soldier Field to discuss the upcoming season and NIU's Sept. 17 date with Wisconsin at the historic lakefront venue. There are a slew of stories in many of the local papers and online.

Schiller-Pat-2010-007.jpgLindsey Willhite of the Daily Herald filed this feature story on Pat Schiller and his return to the middle linebacker position and had this blog entry, while Anthony Zilis of the Daily Chronicle posted this feature on NIU tailback Jas Hopkins.

Rick Armstrong of the Sun-Times discussed what it means for NIU to be playing at Soldier Field in this story posted in the Aurora Beacon News.

Harnish-Chandler-7.jpgScott Powers of posted a pair of stories on his college football blog. Shortly after yesterday's press conference he posted this story on NIU's desire to play at another historic Chicago sports stadium and posted a video interview with Sean Progar. Powers also filed this feature story on quarterback Chandler Harnish.

Between the coverage on many of the Chicago television stations and the stories scattered throughout the area papers and websites, it was yet another successful trip to Chicago for Northern Illinois and its football program. 

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