Northern Illinois graduate student and Huskie Media
Relations graduate assistant Michael Benson returns to ESPN UNITE: The Schwab
Wednesday at 11 p.m. CT to take part in the semi-final round.
Benson will take on Mississippi's Ryan Smith, the
Southeastern Conference's winner, and Penn State's Daniel Smith, the champion
from the Big Ten. The winner will receive an all-expenses paid trip to Bristol,
Conn., for the finals at ESPN's headquarters.
"The semi-finals should be quite a challenge,"
Benson said. "It was nice to get out of the first round with a win, but now the
questions and the competition will be better. I've been doing what I can to
prepare, but it ultimately comes down to getting questions that fit your
The sport management major clinched a berth in the
semi-finals April 10 by winning the Mid-American Conference title over students
from Central Michigan and Western Michigan. Benson got four points out of the
first round, which asked the contestants to name the top 15 NFL career leaders
in rushing yards. After stumbling on the pop culture question, he all but
clinched the win by scoring five points in the college sports round question
that asked contestants to name the members of the Pac-12 Conference.
"I really struggled in the pop culture and social
media rounds the first time out," Benson said. "If I have any chance of moving
on to the finals, I'll have to do considerably better in both of those
The winner from the third semi-final will take on
Michael Smith of Utah and Taylor Smith of Maryland.
Track & Field: NIU took 11th place at the MAC Outdoor Championships over the weekend. Janay Mitchell accounted for eight team points by finishing third in the 100 meters and seventh in the 200 meters. Meanwhile, Sidra Sherrill (shot put), Natalie Tarter (heptathlon) and Jamie Burr (800 meters) also scored points for the Huskies.
NIU Athletics would like to offer its sincere condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of long-time NIU Football "Sound Guy" Rick Calderon, who passed away Wednesday, May 1, in DeKalb following a long illness.
Calderon, who retired from NIU in 2008, was a fixture at Northern Illinois home and away football games for many, many seasons. In addition to operating the public address and music systems during games, he was responsible for the coaches' headset communications both home and away. At head coach Joe Novak's request, Calderon would set up "music" (often the opposing teams' fight songs, crowd noise and band played on a loop) to be blared at footbal practice during the week to simulate the other team's stadium atmosphere. On road trips, he would spend time illustrating post cards which he would then send to his many friends.
Calderon graduated from Northern Illinois in 1982 and was active in designing, installing and maintaining audio/visual systems around campus in addition to working with the football team.
Read much more on Calderon, here
. A memorial service was held Wednesday, May 8, in DeKalb.
Track & Field: Northern Illinois closed out their regular season over the weekend with a busy three meet schedule. At the Penn Relays, the Huskies got a MAC auto bid from Sidra Sherrill in the shot put, while Janay Mitchell solidified her spot in the 100 meters. Meanwhile, NIU got strong showings at West Chester and UW-Whitewater. Men's Tennis: Northern Illinois saw their season come to an end as they hosted the 2013 MAC tournament. The Huskies advanced to their first title match since 2004 when they upset No. 1 Ball State, 4-2, Friday. Their run ended Saturday, though, when they fell to Western Michigan, 4-3.
Everybody inside the NIU Athletic Department will be dressing a little less formal Wednesday, April 24, as they take part in "Denim Day." The initiative is hosted by the Victim Advocacy Services of the Women's Resource Center and Sexual Assault Awareness Month to honor victims and survivors of sexual assault.
Began in 1999 in Los Angeles, Denim Day has spread throughout the country as a way to fight back against sexual violence in the Untied States and across the world. The day also helps fight misconceptions about sexual assault.
Track & Field: Northern Illinois dominated the competition at the Huskie Open with nine event titles. Megan Gregory (100 hurdles, 200 meters), Janay Mitchell (100 meters), Ida Burbulla (high jump), Sidra Sherrill (shot put), Alex Schad (long jump) all earned wins, along with the 4x100 and 4x400 relay teams. Out west at the Beach Invitational, Meghan Heuer earned an automatic bid to MACs in the 800 meters. Men's Tennis: Northern Illinois closed out their regular season Sunday with a big 4-3 win over Buffalo. The win helped secure NIU a spot in next weekend's MAC Championships, which the Huskies host.
Dr. Julie Rochester will be the featured speaker for the Northern Illinois Athletic Training Education Program's 8th Annual Roger Kalisiak Alumni Lecture held on Thursday, April 18, at 7 p.m., in the McCaerins Auditorium in the Yordon Center. Dr. Rochester's speech is entitled "Athletic Training" Affirming Our Identity as Heathcare Providers."
Dr. Rochester is a tenured Professor of Athletic Training at Northern Michigan University, where she has been the Director of the Athletic Training Education Program since 1998.
Northern Illinois will also serve as the host of this year's Illinois Athletic Trainer's Student Congress. The congress is scheduled to meet on Sunday, April 21, at noon in the Yordon Center.