Towson is an FCS school that runs a football program, year-in, year-out, with little glamor or glitz. As noted about a billion times, they've only played one FBS school in team history, and that was in-state opponent Navy last year.
And Towson seems excited to be playing a opponent that's on a bowl-game level, but the problem is, I think they're a little bit too excited. I think they have some image that because NU has had a decent amount of success in the past few years, we're a major, big time, Hollywood program, with tens of thousands of murderously raucous fans screaming obscenities and hurling D Batteries and soda bottles filled with blood onto the field.
The Baltimore Sun
tells us that head coach Rob Ambrose has been putting his team through practice with "music, thunder, and screaming" piped in to simulate the atmosphere of NU's 47,000 seat Terrordome.
The article includes a smattering of funny quotes: (Editors note: I wish I could tell you why all the font on my blog goes black for a few paragraphs, but no idea.)
"First up is Northwestern - yes, that Northwestern - a bowl-savvy, lip-smacking Big Ten team whose scrubs might give Towson fits."
"Not lost on the Tigers is recent history. Three years ago, New Hampshire, another team from the unheralded Colonial Athletic Association, journeyed to Evanston, Ill., and stunned Northwestern, 34-17."
Rob Ambrose says that ""Our guys are going to find out that, as big and bad as a top 20 team is, if they play their butts off, they can play with anybody."
"Northwestern has 47 lettermen back from a team that beat Michigan before 107,000 in Ann Arbor.
On the other hand, Towson has new uniforms"
Uh, while it's cool to see NU portrayed in such a flattering light, there's some serious overexaggerations. First off, Towson might have beaten Michigan in front of 107,000 in Ann Arbor last year. Next, although we were ranked No. 19 for a little bit last year, calling us a "Big, bad top 20 team" is a bit of a stretch. Also, we've played in bowls, we're not quite bowl-savvy, I'm not sure what "yes, that Northwestern" is supposed to mean, and although we were expected to win against New Hampshire, the author is writing about it like it was Hoosiers or something. (By the way, despite the slight tweaking of facts to make this story more dramatic than it should be, the author is not fictional Baltimore Sun reporter Scott Templeton. And to be honest, it's not a badly written story, nor is it really tweaking the facts, I just find it really funny how NU is described in the complete opposite way of how we've come to expect it. If you're reading this, author of this story, keep doing your thing.)
Also, Towson is organizing a big trip to watch the game, the only time they're doing so all year, and an author for Towson's student newspaper calls us "inarguably the school's toughest opponent in program history."
Look, like I said, it's all flattering. But I'm sorry, we have to disappoint. There will probably be somewhere in the range of 15-20,000 people at the game on Saturday, leaving the stadium about 2/3 empty, and, in terms of us being, big, bad boys, although we wish everybody thought that we were, the other ten schools in our conference laugh at us. Even when we beat them.
Basically, as I've said about a million times, this game is a whirlpool of disappointment. If we do great, we're saddening a bunch of happy-go-lucky Towsonians excited to see their Tigers compete against a Big Ten school, only to see them get ransacked in front of a half-interested crowd. If it's close, our team isn't too good. If we lose, well, I hope you enjoyed people talking about us positively.
That being said, I think we'll win by a lot. And although this means that we'll forever have to live with the guilt of bringing sadness upon the comically overenthusiastic people who wrote these articles, on the plus side,