Northern Illinois’ SchedulePalooza is now in its third day, and today the Huskies announced a future football series against the Utah Utes.
Today’s announcement began with a hint on Twitter (no team from this conference has ever played at Huskie Stadium), followed by one each on Instagram (team has played at least 3 games in Illinois since 1927) and Facebook (opponents men’s basketball team has played against the Huskies in DeKalb).
A fourth tip featured a short clip from the movie Dogtown and Z-Boys. Although the movie was filmed in Santa Monica, it made its premiere at the Sundance Film Festival in Utah.
NIU Director of Athletics Sean T. Frazier officially announced the series with the Utah Utes at 3pm ET.
“This series with the University of Utah is a big step forward in our future scheduling,” Frazier said. “We are bringing a Pac-12 opponent to our house for the first time, and will meet our goals of facing teams from the Power 5 conferences every year. This series will positively affect our program in many, many ways.”
Northern Illinois will host Utah at Huskie Stadium in Dekalb on Sept. 8, 2018. The Huskies will then travel to face Utah at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City on Sept. 7, 2019.
The 2018 game will be the first ever match-up between NIU and Utah on the football field.
The Huskies now have four non-conference games slated for 2018 and two for 2019. In 2018, NIU is scheduled to host Utah and Idaho and visit Iowa and BYU. In 2019, the Huskies visit both Utah and Nebraska.
Utah now has three games scheduled in 2018 and two in 2019. The Utes are slated to open the season against Weber State and also host BYU. In 2019, Utah opens against Idaho State.