- Associated Press - Monday, February 9, 2015

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) - Illinois will play Northwestern three times over the next five seasons at Soldier Field in Chicago.

Illinois athletic director Mike Thomas said Monday that the 2015 game that was to have been played in Champaign will be moved to Soldier Field. Games between the Illinois Big Ten schools in 2017 and 2019 will also be played at the Chicago stadium.

All of the games would have been Illinois home games played in Champaign. It means the Illini face the Wildcats in Chicago for five straight seasons.

Thomas said playing in Chicago is a good way for Illinois to connect with its fan base in the city and impress recruits.

Each game will be played on the weekend after Thanksgiving.

Illinois and Northwestern met in 2010 at Wrigley Field in Chicago.

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