In three of their six games this season, Northern Illinois (5-1, 2-0) has had to come from behind and put together a strong fourth quarter to come out with a win.
Three of their last four games have come down to a strong performance in the final quarter. Against Army it was an 8 yard touchdown pass to win the game. At home against Kansas it took 17 fourth quarter points win 30-23, and this past weekend the Huskies scored within the last five minutes to cap off a 14 point fourth quarter for the 35-23 win over Ball State.
Following their one point loss to Iowa in week one, Northern Illinois has put together five straight wins. That game against the Hawkeyes was the only game this season that the Huskies scored no points in the fourth quarter.
Head coach Dave Doeren credits much of their success to the confidence that his players and coaching staff have when the game is on the line.
“I just think we have a lot of confidence as coaches and as players. Our resolve, the fact that we don’t quit, we don’t flinch, we don’t panic, and I think the belief and I think our guys are mentally tough." Doeren explained.
All of those are needed to for a team to rally for a win late in games, perhaps none more important than confidence from both the coaches and players. This weekend they'll take on Buffalo at home. Their remaining MAC schedule features only one team with a winning record (Toledo at 5-1).
In his first season, Doeren led the team to an 11-3 record, including a 38-20 win over Arkansas State in the GoDaddy.com bowl. With the 5-1 record this season, Doeren has improved to 16-4 in his second season as a head coach. Good things are happening in DeKalb.