Illinois won’t fork over one of its home games anymore.
The team announced that it will no longer take on Northwestern in its biannual game at Soldier Field. The two teams were previously scheduled to meet at the home of the Chicago Bears in 2017 and 2019, but those meetings will be played in Champaign.
“We feel strongly that we should play our traditional rivalry games in Champaign, but at the same time we are committed to a strong presence in Chicago,” Illinois athletic director Josh Whitman said in a statement. “Our intent is to play a major non-conference opponent at Soldier Field once every four years. Our team and fans enjoyed the game against Washington in 2013.
“It is important to maintain exposure in Chicago, and this also allows our fans and student-athletes an opportunity to experience Soldier Field.”
Illinois will host USF at Soldier Field on Sept. 15, 2018. That’s the team’s next scheduled game at Soldier Field.