Well, this one was over after the first quarter of play. The Northern Illinois Huskies (4-3, 2-0 MAC) put up 21 points in the first 14 minutes on their way to a 45-12 victory over the Miami RedHawks (1-6, 0-3 MAC), who lost their sixth consecutive game.
The Huskies offense amassed 514 total yards in just 20:15 of game time; while their defense held the RedHawks offense to just 309 total yards. In fact, NIU ran for more yards (311 rushing yards) than Miami had all game.
NIU put up 21 unanswered points in the first quarter but was stalled in the second. The RedHawks were able to get a field goal before the half to make it 21-3.
Miami had a chance to possibly turn the tide in their favor to start the second half after Aregeros Turner accidentally ran the opening kickoff into the endzone before taking a knee, giving Miami two points and the ball. Miami, now down 21-5, was driving down into Huskie territory but they were once again denied; as Shawun Lurry continued his spectacular season, intercepting Billy Bahl's pass in the endzone and returning it to the 47 yard line. The pick was Lurry's NCAA-leading seventh on the season and his 47-yard run back gives him 209 return yards on the year (also an NCAA best).
On the next play Joel Bouagnon would run it the rest of the way, 53-yards basically untouched, making it a 28-5 Huskie lead and swing momentum back in NIU's favor.
Bahl would find Fred McRae IV late in the fourth quarter on a 25-yard strike that would be Miami's only touchdown of the day.
But the Huskies would run in two more touchdowns in the final four minutes. Those runs pushed NIU's rushing yardage to 311 yards and five rushing touchdowns. Joel Bouagnon would lead the way with three of those, including that huge 53-yard scamper, his longest of the season. Bouagnon carried the ball just 14 times but finished with 134 yards. Jordan Huff also carried the ball 12 times for 64 yards and a score of his own while freshman Marcus Jones added a 73-yard scamper late in the game for a touchdown as well.
After a superb performance from Drew Hare last week, Hare continued to do well this week. He did play as well, but still was able to go 17-26 for 203 yards and had a 32-yard touchdown pass to Tommylee Lewis in the first quarter. Kenny Golladay was his most targeted player and finished the game with six grabs for 73 yards.
Miami's offense, despite the loss, was quite balanced as they had 156 passing yards and another 153 rushing. Bahl finished the game 16-33 with a TD, an interception, and all 156 of those passing yards.
Nine different players ran the ball for the RedHawks, with Alonzo Smith leading the way for 57 yards on 11 carries. Bahl also completed passes to eight different receivers, as James Gardner led the team with 49 yards on just two catches.
Miami will look to turn around their luck when the head to Kalamazoo to take on the Western Michigan Broncos next Saturday at 2 p.m. (1 CST).
For NIU, they'll head back to DeKalb for homecoming, where they'll play the Eastern Michigan Eagles next Saturday at 3:30 p.m. (2:30 CST).