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Partnership with Cubs ensures more Northwestern football at Wrigley

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Old Feb 4, 2013, 07:24 AM   #1
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After years of flirting, the Cubs and Northwestern will take their relationship to the next level Tuesday when they announce a broad partnership during a news conference at Wrigley Field.

A university source told the Tribune that while Wrigley will not be host to a football game in 2013, other NU teams (baseball, softball, soccer and lacrosse) might play some there this year.

And it's just a matter of time before NU football returns to Wrigley, given that the 2010 Northwestern-Illinois game was profitable for the Cubs and gave the Wildcats a huge marketing boost with ESPN's "College GameDay" in town..

In an October interview with the Tribune, Ricketts forecasted more football games at Wrigley, called the 2010 Illinois-NU game "one of the greatest days in Wrigley Field history" and said: "When I saw the Northwestern band on the field at halftime, I almost cried."

Teddy Greenstein
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 07:34 AM   #2
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Good, I'd love nothing more than to beat their a**es on that field more often.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 07:36 AM   #3
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using Wrigley for anything but football is a nothing deal. no one cares. no one will be there to see it.

using Wrigley for a football game means taking a home game and moving it to a 42,000 seat venue. For NU thats fine. It will take them at least 2-3 years to remodel the place to allow regular 2 direction football. What was allowed 2 yers ago wount be allowed again. Now you are looking at 2015 or 2016 for the first game. By that time, if we arent drawing 60,000 people to our games, we have much larger issues to deal with than finding suitable off campus venues to play a football game.

I loved the venue, I was there. But it wasnt a suitable place for us to move home games to.

But its a good move for NU, once they get the playing field issue figure out.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 07:38 AM   #4
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Good, I'd love nothing more than to beat their a**es on that field more often.
they will NEVER schedule our game with them there again. that is where they will play IU, PU, Minny, MD or Rutgers.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 07:39 AM   #5
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they will NEVER schedule our game with them there again. that is where they will play IU, PU, Minny, MD or Rutgers.
You're probably right...cowards

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using Wrigley for anything but football is a nothing deal. no one cares. no one will be there to see it.

using Wrigley for a football game means taking a home game and moving it to a 42,000 seat venue. For NU thats fine. It will take them at least 2-3 years to remodel the place to allow regular 2 direction football. What was allowed 2 yers ago wount be allowed again. Now you are looking at 2015 or 2016 for the first game. By that time, if we arent drawing 60,000 people to our games, we have much larger issues to deal with than finding suitable off campus venues to play a football game.

I loved the venue, I was there. But it wasnt a suitable place for us to move home games to.

But its a good move for NU, once they get the playing field issue figure out.
I don't think we ever planned on moving one of our home games there did we?
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 09:00 AM   #6
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You're probably right...cowards



I don't think we ever planned on moving one of our home games there did we?
to my knowledge, there has never been any public mention of it, and this "arrangement" is NU's way of locking up exclusivity of the venue for NCAA college football. From a capacity standpoint, it works for NU. For us or anyone else, really, it would require seat ticket prices to be raised quite a bit to make it pay off. I dont think MT or the AD at any other B1G school wants to deal with the push back you would get with $300-$400 ticket prices for seats in the upper deck , just so the economics of the sell out would work out.

It is a major coup for NU though. My hats off to Jim Phillips.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 09:22 AM   #7
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to my knowledge, there has never been any public mention of it, and this "arrangement" is NU's way of locking up exclusivity of the venue for NCAA college football. From a capacity standpoint, it works for NU. For us or anyone else, really, it would require seat ticket prices to be raised quite a bit to make it pay off. I dont think MT or the AD at any other B1G school wants to deal with the push back you would get with $300-$400 ticket prices for seats in the upper deck , just so the economics of the sell out would work out.

It is a major coup for NU though. My hats off to Jim Phillips.
I don't know how well it will work for them though. Part of the reason it was such a big even (outside of it being the first time in forever) was that it Illinois and NW.

I'm not sure NW and Minnesota will draw the same type of crowd.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 10:10 AM   #8
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"When I saw the Northwestern band on the field at halftime, I almost cried."


Yeah, their mediocre high school band always made me cry, too. :laugh:
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 10:30 AM   #9
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Good, I'd love nothing more than to beat their a**es on that field more often.
We gotta get better at football first!

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Old Feb 4, 2013, 02:38 PM   #10
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I don't know how well it will work for them though. Part of the reason it was such a big even (outside of it being the first time in forever) was that it Illinois and NW.

I'm not sure NW and Minnesota will draw the same type of crowd.
it was a little more "special" because it was UI-NW, but believe me, NU vs any B1G school is going to sell out and be a big event.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 11:43 AM   #11
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NU-Cubs deal: Five Wrigley football games

While executives on both sides imagine the marketing and signage possibilities, Chicago-area football fans who enjoyed the 2010 Wrigley Field football game will get to witness five more, starting in 2014.

Those dates are all to be determined, given that Big Ten schedules need to be reworked because of the additions of Rutgers and Maryland. They could be played every year from 2014-2018 or it could be five games played over 7-8 seasons.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports...,3984448.story
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 02:29 PM   #12
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Rumors are that they will be scheduling Michigan or Ohio State. We all know those visiting fans would take up a lot of tickets. The purple scoreboard was bad enough, but now we will be seeing sacred ground filled with Michigan or OSU filth? This is terrible. I'm hoping that all of these are against UI.

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Old Feb 5, 2013, 02:56 PM   #13
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Also, this is appropriate for the occasion:


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Old Feb 5, 2013, 04:16 PM   #14
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Rumors are that they will be scheduling Michigan or Ohio State. We all know those visiting fans would take up a lot of tickets. The purple scoreboard was bad enough, but now we will be seeing sacred ground filled with Michigan or OSU filth? This is terrible. I'm hoping that all of these are against UI.
not one game will be with us. bank on that.

I expect every game at Wrigley to be NU vs IU, PU, Md or Rutgers
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 05:34 PM   #15
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Also, this is appropriate for the occasion:


If Northwestern is Evanston's Big Ten Team, then I guess Illinois is Philo's Big Ten Team, or perhaps the Little Team on the Prairie. NU is making a habit of eating the Illini's lunch as far as marketing goes. This is a huge play by the Wildcats. They will not only be playing football games on a new field layout with the Wrigley remodel, they will also be playing some baseball, soccer and lacrosse matches. It's not only a marketing win, but a recruiting win as well. We seem to be stuck in the small town, small goal mentality. When you even have radio/newspaper reporters who openly don't want to see the Illini to have anything to do with Chicago, it is an open invitation to Northwestern, Notre Dame, Wisconsin and others to come on in. It's free for the taking. We are looked at down here as a small town non destination. So, while NU is trying to raise its profile by partnering with one of sports most recognizable brands, we're just hoping we can get Jimmy Johns to help with the rehab of the Assemby Hall. It is unfortunate, but just the way it is.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 07:22 PM   #16
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If Northwestern is Evanston's Big Ten Team, then I guess Illinois is Philo's Big Ten Team, or perhaps the Little Team on the Prairie. NU is making a habit of eating the Illini's lunch as far as marketing goes. This is a huge play by the Wildcats. They will not only be playing football games on a new field layout with the Wrigley remodel, they will also be playing some baseball, soccer and lacrosse matches. It's not only a marketing win, but a recruiting win as well. We seem to be stuck in the small town, small goal mentality. When you even have radio/newspaper reporters who openly don't want to see the Illini to have anything to do with Chicago, it is an open invitation to Northwestern, Notre Dame, Wisconsin and others to come on in. It's free for the taking. We are looked at down here as a small town non destination. So, while NU is trying to raise its profile by partnering with one of sports most recognizable brands, we're just hoping we can get Jimmy Johns to help with the rehab of the Assemby Hall. It is unfortunate, but just the way it is.
Not a single point of this is correct.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 09:31 PM   #17
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Not a single point of this is correct.
Our AD certainly feels that we are losing the PR battle for Chicago and he's not wrong...it's why he's ramping up an effort to take back the momentum...and we will...you know where the Bears got their colors??..the University of Illinois...stay tuned....
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Old Feb 6, 2013, 04:11 PM   #18
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Sorry that the truth hurts.

There are some people here that think the Illini are big time in the money sports. They are not. It is true that several NU varsity sports will get games at Wrigley. Also, the Cubs will have access to NU training facilities when needed.

So, none of this is true? Sorry, but all of it is true. The Illini are not, and have never been consistently strong in the money sports in the Big Ten. I would like to see this change, but I just don't see it happening.
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Old Feb 6, 2013, 04:48 PM   #19
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they will NEVER schedule our game with them there again. that is where they will play IU, PU, Minny, MD or Rutgers.
Not so sure about those opponents.

I agree they will not schedule us, but I still think they will need a decent to big name opponent to sell out Wrigley field. IU, md Rutgers won't cut it imho
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Old Feb 6, 2013, 05:12 PM   #20
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When you even have radio/newspaper reporters who openly don't want to see the Illini to have anything to do with Chicago, it is an open invitation to Northwestern, Notre Dame, Wisconsin and others to come on in.


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Old Feb 6, 2013, 06:58 PM   #21
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Sorry that the truth hurts.

There are some people here that think the Illini are big time in the money sports. They are not. It is true that several NU varsity sports will get games at Wrigley. Also, the Cubs will have access to NU training facilities when needed.

So, none of this is true? Sorry, but all of it is true. The Illini are not, and have never been consistently strong in the money sports in the Big Ten. I would like to see this change, but I just don't see it happening.
You're either a troll and not an Illini fan or a small minded hick, because you're just wrong. There are so many more UI fans in Chicago than any other team ... Period. It's our turf.
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Old Feb 7, 2013, 07:57 AM   #22
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You're either a troll and not an Illini fan or a small minded hick, because you're just wrong. There are so many more UI fans in Chicago than any other team ... Period. It's our turf.
That is true, but we have a lot of weeds in our yard and the neighbors are complaining..................

Last edited by Dan; Feb 7, 2013 at 08:05 AM.
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Old Feb 7, 2013, 08:14 AM   #23
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You're either a troll and not an Illini fan or a small minded hick, because you're just wrong. There are so many more UI fans in Chicago than any other team ... Period. It's our turf.
I will answer without using personal insults and will try to be brief.

Not an Illini fan? A troll? I went to my first games when Ray Eliot was head coach. Rode the Illinois Central specials out of 12th Street Station in Chicago with my dad and my brothers to seef the games in Champaign. This was decades before there was anything called Amtrak or Interstate 57. A fan can be critical of his team. If not, then he's just another cheerleader

A small minded hick? Spent most of my almost 70 years in Chicago and several years here in Champaign and a few other places. Watched a lot of bad football over the years.

BTW, I am very excited about what Coach Beckman has done with his first real recruiting class. He is bringing in a ton of new players. I also think coach Groce, given the time, will succeed. And, in my opinion coach Bollant is one of the top women's coaches in the country. The challenge was and always will be to bring in top players and top coaches and keep them here.
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Old Feb 7, 2013, 08:18 AM   #24
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it should be our turf, but sadly, its anything but these days.

and beleive me, NW would sell out Wrigley to any BCS opponent. It wont have near the buzz of our game there with them 2 years ago, but they will sell out .

They sell out Dyche when ever they play any of the top 6 teams in B1G, and they have little incentive to move one of those games to Wrigley.

I also think the "remodeling" of Wrigley to accomodate a regulation field with adequate out of bounds areas is a bigger deal than anyone is admitting right now. I will believe it when I see it.
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Old Feb 9, 2013, 12:13 PM   #25
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Put me in the troll camp apparently. I think it was a great move by NW. They have a small alumni base, but they are making up some ground with strong marketing. My understanding is there will be some marketing campaigns in conjunction with the Cubs. This is a win for NW. (They still suck.)

I would think the idea of playing at Wrigley has some appeal to recruits (multiple sports) as well.
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