SIU football team beats another Top-5 opponent, now ranked No. 5 in nation

CARBONDALE – For the first time in school history, Southern Illinois has beaten two Top-5 opponents in the same season. 

Two weeks after Southern took down No. 1 North Dakota State, SIU validated that win with a 17-16 victory over No. 4 Northern Iowa in a thriller at Saluki Stadium on Saturday.

Trailing, 13-0 at halftime, and without its top two quarterbacks, the Salukis (4-1, 3-1) battled back in the second half to take the lead, 17-16, on a 3-yard touchdown pass from third-string QB Stone Labanowitz to Jerron Rollins with 9:43 remaining.

That touchdown held up, in dramatic fashion, as first Southern missed a 31-yard field goal with 6:40 remaining, and then UNI missed a 30 yarder wide left with seven seconds to go, setting off a wild celebration on the Saluki sideline.

With yet another likely Top 10 opponent coming to Carbondale this week in South Dakota State, Southern is thick in the hunt for its first playoff appearance since 2009.

SIU ranked No. 5 in nation

The Southern Illinois University Carbondale football team moved up five spots to No. 5 in the national rankings this week and is preparing to host No. 6 South Dakota State on Saturday at noon. 

The last time SIU was ranked in the Top 5 was on Sept. 13, 2010. 


The Gazette-Democrat

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