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NIU Notes: Historical day for Huskies

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Northern Illinois made history at Ross-Ade Stadium Saturday.

The Huskies became the first Mid-American Conference team in history to beat two Big Ten teams in the same regular season after a 55-24 win over Purdue. NIU defeated Iowa, 30-27, Week 1.

"That means a lot. It means a lot to this program," Lynch said of beating two Big Ten teams in one season. "We've came a long way since my freshman year. Things are looking up. The guys on this team love football. Any time you get the chance to play a BCS team, we have a chip on our shoulder."

Rod Carey said he wouldn't really think about what the win means until February, after National Signing Day.

"I don't know, I'll deal with that after the season's over," Carey said. "We're 4-0, and after 24 hours we're 0-0. We have a conference to go get."

The 55 points scored by the Huskies was the highest point total the Boilermakers have given up in the history of Ross-Ade Stadium, which dates back to 1924. It was also the highest point total NIU has ever had against a Big Ten team.

NIU's 31-point win tied the mark for highest margin of victory for a Mid-American Conference team over a Big Ten school. Toledo beat Minnesota 38-7, back in 2001.

B1G success: The Huskies are now 4-4 in their past eight games against the Big Ten, with two of those victories coming at Purdue. NIU had lost 19 straight against the Big Ten before this recent run.

Defense comes up big: NIU's defense has had its ups and downs the past two weeks. Saturday, the Huskies made plays.

NIU was able to force five Boilermaker turnovers.

"We made way too many self-inflicted wounds in the first quarter. We had too many penalties and turnovers," Purdue head coach Darrell Hazell said. "Against a good team, you can't have that many turnovers and expect to be successful."

Junior safety Dechane Durante had two interceptions for the Huskies. Jimmie Ward and Dominique Ware each had one, while George Rainey had a fumble recovery. NIU has now forced 13 turnovers in 2013.

"It starts with their coaches. Their coaches teach them well during the week, and then it really goes to their credit," Carey said. "They learn each game plan, and then they go execute it, and they know they're going to have opportunities if they play the call and execute it. Time after time, we did it today. We made the plays today."

Lynch starts fast: Nobody can say Jordan Lynch hasn't played well against BCS teams this season.

NIU's senior quarterback Jordan Lynch started the game by completing 14 of 15 passes, and finished 18-for-25 for 207 yards and three touchdowns. He also ran for a score.

Lynch has now thrown six touchdowns and no interceptions against the Big Ten this season.

"We knew going into the game that there would be some easy throws and we took advantage of it," he said. "We had the play-action and running game going and that made my job easier. Some of my receivers also made some good catches because I don't think they were all on the money."

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