I'll say this: playing a game at 7 a.m. local time is a very weird thing. But it was nice to wake up and catch some of the game. Northern Illinois is not a team ready for television: the MAC has some competitive teams at the top but NIU isn't one of them; they're likely the 11th best team and they're missing arguably their top player, Abdel Nader, to suspension. It was a miracle that the Huskies only trailed 23-17 at half.
It was not really a contest. Valpo's top three scorers outscored NIU's entire team and only Aksel Bolin could manage 10 points to go with nine rebounds. For a weak team, however, they stayed in it thanks to 13 offensive rebounds (to Valparaiso's three) and committed three fewer turnovers. But the shooting was just not there.
NIU falls to 0-2 but ought to pick up their first win, if it really counts, against NAIA opponent Judson University (1-5) on Sunday.