The Bronze Stalk will stay in DeKalb for another season.
Ball State was helpless against Northern Illinois running back Cameron Stingily, who shredded the Cardinals for 148 yards and 3 touchdowns on 26 carries in the 35-21 victory. The Northern Illinois senior dragged Ball State defenders all night long, scoring his third touchdown with just under three minutes left and cinching the victory for the Huskies.
Stingily's counterpart was impressive in the loss. Ball State running back Jahwan Edwards carried the ball 21 times for 92 yards and a touchdown. With the score, the 48th of his career for Edwards, the senior is now the Cardinals' all time points leader with 288.
This year's installment of the rivalry didn't provide the aerial fireworks of years past. Huskies quarterback Drew Hare completed 16 of 27 passes for 126 yards without a touchdown or interception. He did commit a fumble late in the fourth quarter however, but the Cardinals were unable to turn this into points, down a touchdown 28-21.
Ball State quarterback Jack Milas had the worst statistical game of his short four game career. While the freshman signal caller came out throwing darts, completing his first five passes, all night he struggled with passes being tipped at the line of scrimmage. Milas completed 16 of 39 passes for 174 yards, 1 touchdown and 3 interceptions. One of those interceptions occurred on a hail mary heave at the end of the first half. In total, the Cardinals would commit 5 turnovers.
Ball State got a big game from Jordan Williams. Milas and Williams hooked up 5 times for 95 yards and a touchdown. Milas would also find KeVonn Mabon 6 times for 41 yards.
Hare hit six different receivers Wednesday night. Chiefly, Da'Ron Brown who caught 7 passes for 75 yards. Aregeros Turner tallied another 44 yards on 4 catches.
The Huskies ground game chewed up clock all night long. NIU held the ball for nearly 12 more minutes than the Cardinals. Tied at the half, Northern Illinois put together a 14 play 71 yard drive that elapsed over 6 minutes and was punctuated by a Stingily 1 yard touchdown run to go up 21-14.
With the win, the Huskies improve to 7-2 overall and 4-1 in MAC play. Northern Illinois gets a crack at division leader Toledo in another nationally televised matchup next Tuesday. The contest will essentially be a MAC West playoff, with the winner in the driver's seat to win the division and earn a trip to Detroit for the MAC Championship Game.
Ball State falls to 3-6 overall and 2-3 in league play. The Cardinals are back in action next Wednesday when they hit the road to face the Massachusetts Minutemen. The game can be seen on ESPNU.