ATHENS, Ohio - The Ohio University footbal team will make its third trip to the Mid-American Conference Championship game in the last six years on Friday as it takes on Northern Illinois inside Ford Field in Detroit. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. and will be aired on ESPN2.
A win over Northern Illinois would give the Bobcats' first-ever Mid-American Conference Championship game title. The Bobcats rank third in the MAC in total offense (461.0) and fourth in total defense (351.1).
The Bobcats own a 9-3 record on the year. Ohio has won nine games on six different occasions. Three of those nine-win seasons have come during the Frank Solich era. A win over the Huskies would give the Bobcats their first 10 win season since 1968. It would also hand Solich his 50th career win at Ohio.
Friday night's game will mark the 19th meeting between the two teams. The series is tied at nine wins apiece. The first time the two teams met was back on Nov. 23, 1968 with Ohio earning a 28-12 victory in Athens, Ohio. The last meeting took place on Nov. 21, 2009 in Athens, Ohio. In that contest, Ohio defeated Northern Illinois 38-31.
Northern Illinois defeated Eastern Michigan last week to claim its second-consecutive MAC West Division Championship and punch its third ticket to Detroit in the last seven years. The Huskies come into the game as hot as any team in the MAC, having won their last seven games.
Senior quarterback Chandler Harnish has led the way offensively for the Huskies as he has accounted for 34 touchdowns on the year. Defensively, NIU linebacker Pat Schiller leads the way with a team-best 103 tackles. He also has 10.0 tackles for loss and 2.0 sacks.
Friday night's game can also be heard live on the Citizens Bank Ohio IMG Sports Network with "Voice of the Bobcats" Russ Eisenstein, Rob Cornelius and Brian Boesch calling all of the action. Airtime begins at 6 p.m. ET with MAC Championship Live.