Game 312: Purdue vs. Northwestern

This was Northwestern’s bowl game – Wrigley Field. It really should be the site of a postseason bowl game – the College Football Tour Windy City Bowl, perhaps? But, I digress. After winning the Big Ten west division two of the last three years, the Wildcats have slipped back to the Big Ten’s basement. This battle against the surging Boilermakers in “the friendly confines” offered Northwestern a bowl-like experience.

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NORTHWESTERN – RYAN FIELD

Ryan Field in Evanston, Illinois is known as the “Wrigley Field” of college football. It doesn’t quite have the history of the Cubs, but boasts a very classic and old school stadium atmosphere. For a while now, NU has been calling themselves Chicago’s Big Ten Team. Attempts to market this slogan are popping up around the city, and the evidence is beginning to show with more rumps in the seats in Evanston.  Perhaps because Chicagoans are slowly realizing that Northwestern is no longer The Big Ten’s little brother.

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WISCONSIN – CAMP RANDALL STADIUM

Often regarded as one of the Big Ten’s wildest and most thrilling venues, Camp Randall Stadium never disappoints. Once a Civil War training site, this massive structure is crammed in a beautiful residential area among dorms, fraternity houses, campus buildings and bars. The Camp is the perfect college venue with views of the state capital and Madison’s surrounding lakes (Mendota and Menona).

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Game 306: #18 Wisconsin vs. #12 Notre Dame

Meeting in the middle in Chicago, Notre Dame battled Wisconsin for the first time since 1964. The headlines leading up to this matchup circulated around the quarterback matchup. Senior Jack Coan, Notre Dame’s signal caller, just had transferred from Wisconsin where current freshman quarterback, Graham Mertz, had just nudged him out of the starting position. The drama surged with discussions of which quarterback would prove himself more worthy. In the end, inexperience would be the difference as Wisconsin literally threw the game away.

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ILLINOIS – MEMORIAL STADIUM

Somewhere amid the cornfields of the midwest lies Champaign, Illinois. It’s a great college town with mounds of enthusiasm and passion for their team. On gameday, tailgating takes place in open fields where music blasts, games are played, and footballs are tossed.  You might even catch the band performing a quick drumline or “Oskee Wow Wow” before they make their march into Memorial Stadium.

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INDIANA – MEMORIAL STADIUM

Due to basketball’s domination in the state of Indiana and a shortage of winning seasons in the past decade, the Hoosier football program is starving for attention in the Big Ten. However, they have all the ingredients in Bloomington to be successful. John Mellencamp, an IU alum, donated a beautiful practice facility and the campus itself is very attractive. Memorial Stadium is hard to miss on campus. It’s old-fashioned press box and extremely high facades seem to go right up into the sky. Recently, Memorial Stadium has undergone a facelift with world class weight lifting facilities and added seats that closed both ends of the stadium. All these pieces make Memorial Stadium primed to be a cauldron of excitement.

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