Tailgate Showdown, Spring Football Game, Highlight Super Sports Saturday at NIU



April 20, 2011

DeKALB, Ill. - Northern Illinois fans are invited to enjoy a full day of Huskie sports this Saturday, April 23 highlighted by the 2011 NIU Football Spring Game in Huskie Staduim beginning at 2 p.m., which will be preceded by the annual HASF Tailgate Showdown at noon. The Tailgate Showdown tent will be set up on the West Side of Huskie Stadium. Parking is available for free in the surrounding campus lots, on the street and in the Convocation Center lots.

This year's edition of the HASF Tailgate Showdown features food from 13 different restaurants and cooks from around DeKalb, as well as a silent auction. Restaurants that are participating include Ruby Tuesday, O'Leary's, Tapa La Luna, Toppers Pizza, Hometown Sports Bar and Grill, Golden Thai Jasmine, Rammy's Sub and Pub, Jenna's and Al Dorado Mexican Restaurant. For just $15 for adults and $10 for children (14 and under), fans can enjoy food from these restaurants, as well as some of NIU's top tailgating cooks, as well as beverages (water, soda, beer) provided by NIU Athletics. Attendees can pay at the door with cash the only form of payment accepted.

Items up for bid at the Silent Auction include two sideline passes for the NIU vs. Army and NIU vs. Western Michigan games at Huskie Stadium, pre-game sideline passes for Soldier Field Showdown II, autographed items from NIU players in the pros including Michael Turner, a Larry English NIU football jersey and a Humanitarian Bowl Gear package.

All proceeds from the Tailgate Showdown supports Northern Illinois student-athletes from all 17 NIU sports teams through the Huskie Athletic Support Fund, the primary direct support organization for NIU Athletics. The HASF annually distributes the money it raises directly into each program's sport budget.

Following the Tailgate Showdown, fans can head into Huskie Stadium to watch the 2011 NIU Football Spring Game. Huskies' first-year head coach Dave Doeren will be splitting the team up with the Red team - made up of the first team players on offense and defense - taking on the rest of the squad, which will be clad in White. Score will be kept and kickers and punters will be in action, although there will not be any kick or punt returns.

ALL Huskie fans who want to be guaranteed tickets to the 2011 Soldier Field Showdown II between NIU and Wisconsin in Chicago on Sept. 17 are reminded that Saturday, April 30 is the priority ticket deadline and NIU personnel will be on hand to take ticket orders Saturday. April 30 is the LAST DAY that NIU fans who are season ticket holders, mini-plan holders or HASF members for 2011 can order tickets to the NIU-Wisconsin game BEFORE they are released for sale to the general public on May 9.

Season tickets are on sale for just $99 for the general public or $88 for NIU faculty and staff, senior citizens, and NIU Alumni Association or Varsity Club members. Available seats will be marked in the stadium. Season ticket holders sit in that same great seat for all six 2011 home games in Huskie Stadium at a 33 percent discount off the single game price.

In addition to Huskie football, fans on campus can catch the NIU baseball, softball, women's track and field and women's tennis teams in action at home on Saturday. The Huskie baseball team takes on Toledo at 1:05 p.m. at Ralph McKinzie Field, while softball will also meet the Rockets in a MAC match-up at 2 p.m. at Mary M. Bell Field. Women's track and field plays host to the Huskie Invitational at the NIU Soccer & Track Complex with field events beginning at 10 a.m. and running events at 11 a.m. Finally, the Northern Illinois women's tennis team faces off against Bowling Green at 1 p.m. at the West Stadium Courts adjacent to McKinzie Field. All of the Northern Illinois spring sports action is free.

For more information on the HASF Tailgate Showdown or the NIU Spring Football game, contact the NIU Athletics External Office at 815-753-1923. For more information on 2011 football tickets, including tickets to Soldier Field Showdown II, go to the special football tickets website at www.huskiefootball2011.com.

-- NIU --

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