Northwestern/Illinois Game Will Only Use One Endzone
Only one end zone will be used for offense Saturday at Wrigley Field for the Illinois-Northwestern game because of safety concerns, the Big Ten announced. The east end zone is just feet away from the right-field wall, and although there is padding, there still were concerns that players could be injured there.
Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald had said this week that he would have different game plans for each end zone to avoid the possibility of injury.
In a statement issued by the Big Ten, the following changes will be made:
- All offensive plays will head toward the west end zone, including all extra points and all overtime possessions.
- All kickoffs will be kicked toward the east end zone.
- After every change of possession, the ball will be repositioned for the offense to head toward the west end zone.
- As a result of a coin toss held by the conference office Friday morning, Illinois will occupy the west team bench in the first half and Northwestern will occupy the west team bench in the second half and for all overtime periods.