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Dr. Saturday

Orange Bowl official reportedly tells NIU: ‘We didn’t even want you here’

Graham Watson
Dr. Saturday

View photo

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(USA Today Sports Images)

Northern Illinois continues to be the Rodney Dangerfield of the BCS bowl rotation – it just can’t get no respect.

After being dissed several times over by ESPN analysts and college football pundits across the country for even getting in the Orange Bowl, the Huskies are reportedly now hearing it from the officials of the bowl that's supposed to be hosting and catering to them.

According to Bruce Feldman of CBSsports.com, an NIU official told him that during one evening in the hospitality suite (where the alcohol tends to flow freely), an Orange Bowl official unleashed a rant that disrespected the Huskies.

“You guys [NIU] don't even deserve to be here,” the Orange Bowl rep said to the NIU staffer. “We didn't even want you here.”

OK. We all knew the Orange Bowl didn’t want Northern Illinois. Neither did any of the other BCS bowls. But the BCS rules are clear and NIU did nothing but play by those rules.The Huskies are 12-1 and worked their way up the rankings to be in a position to capitalize on the BCS rules. If the Orange Bowl wants to be mad at someone, be mad at the Big East, which didn't have a conference champion ranked higher than the Huskies. Or Nebraska, whose terrible showing in the Big Ten title game enabled Northern Illinois to move into the top 16 of the BCS standings and take advantage of a rule that's never been used before.

Bear in mind, this story is hearsay and the Orange Bowl officials aren’t talking. It might have happened this way, it might not have, but either way it’s just another log on the fire that’s already fueling Northern Illinois for Tuesday's contest against Florida State.

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