Last weekend, Northwestern's 2011 senior class became the winningest five-year class in school history, and now they're looking to lead the program to its fourth consecutive bowl appeareance. With a win against Minnesota (2-8, 1-5) on Saturday, Northwestern (5-5, 2-4 Big Ten) would be bowl eligible. It would also be their fourth straight win after a 2-5 start.
The Gophers, meanwhile, come in losers of two straight and have already been eliminated from bowl contention. Statistically, Minnesota has the second-worst defense in the Big Ten, which could suggest a big day ahead for Northwestern's offense, which is among the league's best.
If the Wildcats were to lose on Saturday, it would set up a must-win situation the following week against 12th-ranked Michigan State.
For updates on this game, stay tuned to SB Nation Chicago. For in-depth coverage of this matchup, be sure to visit SB Nation's Northwestern blog, Sippin' On Purple, and SB Nation's Minnesota blog, The Daily Gopher. For more college football news and notes, visit SB Nation's college football hub.