Northwestern and Illinois are the teams. Soldier Field is the setting. And a hat is the prize.
The Wildcats and Fighting Illini are set to take the field at the home of the Chicago Bears in the regular season finale for both teams. But the two programs are in entirely different places. Northwestern is looking to win its 10th game of the season, and achieve its first 10-win regular season since 1995.
Illinois, on the other hand, is merely looking to clinch bowl eligibility. The Illini also finally have a non-interim head coach. Illinois announced prior to the game Saturday that it had given Bill Cubit — who took over for Tim Beckman prior to the start of the season — a two-year contract extension.
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