No. 13 Utah (1-0) vs. Northern Illinois (1-0)
- Kickoff: Saturday, 11 a.m. MDT
- Venue: Rice-Eccles Stadium (45,807)
- Surface: Field turf
- Tickets: UtahUtes.com
- Gameday info: Parking map
- Transit: RideUTA.com
- TV: Pac-12 Networks
- Livestream: Pac-12.com
- Radio: ESPN 700
- Series: Utah leads 1-0
- Weather: Partly cloudy with temperatures near 80 degrees at kickoff
For Northern Illinois: The Huskies are seeking their biggest upset in team history. In 2003, they knocked off 15th-ranked Maryland.
For Utah: The Utes need a win in order to keep lofty expectations alive in terms of the national picture and its implications.
For Northern Illinois: Aside from last year’s 7-6 win at BYU, the Huskies are 0-3 against other teams from the Beehive State — falling to Utah last season and Utah State in 1995 and 2013.
For Utah: The Utes are 24-1 in non-conference games since joining the Pac-12 in 2011. They’ve won 11 consecutive home openers, dating back to the 2008 season.
THE CRYSTAL BALL
Northern Illinois: The Huskies have gone 16 games without allowing an opposing running back to reach 100 yards. A good place to start in this upset bid.
Utah: The Utes could pull away handily if protection is good and the passing game is able to get some chunk yardage to compliment the ground attack.
PLAYER TO WATCH
ZACK MOSS, Utah running back: The senior opened the season with 187 yards against BYU. He needs 158 more to become the second-leading rusher in Utah team history.
Utah’s offensive line vs. NIU’s defensive line: The Utes didn’t give up a single sack in their season-opening win over BYU. Last year, NIU had seven against Utah.
“It’s going to be a big challenge for us and we’re excited about the opportunity.”
— Northern Illinois coach Thomas Hammock
“The main thing that got our attention is that we escaped the game last year by the skin on our teeth for the win.”
— Utah coach Kyle Whittingham
On Sept. 14, Utah hosts Idaho State.
All times MDT
- Aug. 29 — at BYU, won 30-12
- Sept. 7 — Northern Illinois (11 a.m., Pac-12)
- Sept. 14 — Idaho State (2:15 p.m., Pac-12)
- Sept. 20 — at USC (7 p.m., FS1)
- Sept. 28 — Washington State (TBD)
- Oct. 12 — at Oregon State (TBD)
- Oct. 19 — Arizona State (TBD)
- Oct. 26 — California (TBD)
- Nov. 2 — at Washington (TBD)
- Nov. 16 — UCLA (TBD)
- Nov. 23 — at Arizona (TBD)
- Nov. 30 — Colorado (TBD)
- Dec. 6 — Pac-12 Championship (TBD, ABC)