Created:Tuesday, September 13, 2011 7:25 p.m.CDT
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Two different practices

As Northern Illinois' offense studiously went through Wisconsin preparation Tuesday afternoon, its defense moved at a frenetic pace on the field's other end.

The contrast was blunt, split at the 50-yard line. On the offensive side, it looked like an ordinary practice. On defense, coaches hopped and hollered, stressing proper tackling technique – "Wrap up!!" – and everything else associated with solid defense.

Junior safety Demetrius Stone called it the most intense practice since fall camp opened Aug. 4.

"It was a physical day," Stone said. "After the loss last week, we've got to snap back to reality. We've got to get back to playing like we're supposed to. So it was a real intense practice, a real good practice, and it helped us get back into the mentality of how we play."

It was the first practice since NIU lost, 45-42, to Kansas on Saturday after the Huskies defense couldn't tackle, get off the field on third down, and eventually allowed 534 yards. None of those things sat well with anybody. It showed for two hours Tuesday at Huskie Stadium.

– Ryan Wood, @rwood_DDC on Twitter, rwood@shawmedia.com

Will the NIU football team play for the MAC title this year?
Yes
No
Too soon to tell