Eastern Michigan football earned its sixth win of the season against Northern Illinois on Tuesday, Nov. 19, defeating the Huskies 45-17.
The Eagles are now bowl eligible in consecutive seasons for the first time in program history and the third time in four years under head coach Chris Creighton.
“As we are trying to get better and better and more relevant and all of those things, it's a big deal to us to get them once,” Creighton said just after complimenting the Northern Illinois program for the high level of character and success the team has had in recent years.
The Eagles were able to continue their late success in the running game, scoring three more touchdowns this week on the ground and averaging over six yards per rush. Shaq Vann led the team with 101 rushing yards and a touchdown on 14 carries. Jairus Grissom and Mike Glass III also chipped in for touchdown runs of their own.
Glass also had a stellar performance in the passing game, completing 20 of 24 passes for 235 yards and three touchdowns. Glass connected with six different receivers, with Arthur Jackson III and Quian Williams leading the Eagles with five receptions each.
Jackson topped the charts for the receiving core with 78 yards and two touchdowns. Jackson also gave the crowd a highlight-worthy one-handed catch inside the five-yard line along the sideline. Line Latu hauled in the other touchdown pass from Glass.
“I can't wait to see Arthur’s,” Creighton said when asked about Jackson’s phenomenal catch. “I kind of saw it on the replay, but I went up to him and kind of whispered in his ear. Don’t tell anybody I said this, but ‘Wow.’
It felt like we played complementary football in all three phases of the game. There was good energy. Our guys want badly to do things that haven’t been done here in a long time. It’s a good group.”
Tre Harbison, the Northern Illinois running back, was able to rush for 112 yards against the Eagles defense. The Huskies were able to find the end zone just twice. Marcus Childers passed for just 99 yards and one touchdown, and he was intercepted three times by the Eastern Michigan defense. Childers started the game after Ross Bowers, the starting quarterback, was injured.
The Eagles defense was able to force four turnovers, including interceptions by Brody Hoying and Vince Calhoun, as well as a fumble recovery by Kobie Beltram. Hoying had two interceptions for EMU. Beltram also was the game’s leading tackler with 10 tackles, as well as the only sack on the evening for Eastern Michigan.
Northern Illinois will end its season with one final home game on Tuesday, Nov. 26 against the Broncos of Western Michigan University.
Eastern Michigan now sits at 6-5 on the season and 3-4 within the Mid-American Conference. The Eagles will return back home to Rynearson Stadium for the regular season finale in a MAC showdown against Kent State at 12 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 29.