Created:Tuesday, October 13, 2009 10:22 p.m.CDT

Putting aside history

NIU quarterback Chandler Harnish throws a pass during a practice at Huskie Stadium. (Beck Diefenbach -

DeKALB – History isn't on Northern Illinois' side in games at Toledo's Glass Bowl, but that doesn't matter much to NIU coach Jerry Kill.

"The thing is, I haven't been here so I don't really know," Kill said at his weekly news conference Tuesday. "I haven't played at Toledo. I don't know that much about it. I talked to [former NIU] coach [Joe] Novak about it a little bit and I've heard it's a tough place to play. But I think the bigger deal you make out of all those things it just becomes a bigger deal. I just don't make a big deal out of it."

The Huskies won at Toledo in 2005, but before that hadn't won there since 1972, a 30-7 win. The last time the two teams met at Toledo, the Rockets came away with a 70-21 win in Novak's final season with the Huskies.

"Sometimes, you have to give Toledo credit," Kill said. "They've been pretty [darn] good over the years. They've beaten a lot of people at home. I don't think it's just Northern Illinois."

NIU quarterback Chandler Harnish, who returned to the starting lineup from injury last season to defeat Toledo, 38-7, in DeKalb, said those NIU teams that have struggled in the past at Toledo "wasn't our team."

"We're young, we don't look at that stuff," Harnish said. "We just go out and play and coach Kill doesn't allow us to look back at history like that."

A common bond: Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy provides a link between Kill and Toledo coach Tim Beckman. Gundy was the quarterback at Midwest City High School in Oklahoma when Kill was a defensive coach in his first coaching job. Beckman served as Oklahoma State's defensive coordinator under Gundy before leaving for Toledo.

"He's worked under Mike and he certainly does some of the things that Oklahoma State does with the signs, the huddles, speed huddle, then you slow it down and get different rhythms and different formations so it's different," Kill said. "There's no question about it."
Busy bye week:
Kill and the Huskies kept busy during the bye week with practice and Kill said the coaching staff took a long look at where they were at in recruiting. After that, they studied film from the Western Michigan game the week before and film of Toledo.

"Sometimes when you win like that, you don't play near as good as you think you did," Kill said. "And we found out there are a lot of things we didn't do as good as we should have."
Injury update:
Kill said tight end Jason Schepler, who has been out with a dislocated elbow, was to visit the doctor Tuesday and might be cleared to play, but he won't rush Schepler's return and doesn't anticipate the Sycamore native will play against the Rockets.

"Hopefully he'll get to practice some and we'll bring him along," Kill said. "We want to be smart on that."

Kill also said center Eddie Adamski (low ankle sprain) has been moving around a lot better. Adamski injured the ankle against Idaho but played against Western Michigan.

Quotable: "I feel like we go out and try and establish the run and if a team doesn't know that by now, then they have a definite problem." – Harnish on the NIU offense.

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