The Chicago Bears are going to the playoffs despite losing 35-16 to the Packers in the regular-season finale at Soldier Field. The Bears Mitchell Trubisky finished with 252 yards passing and an interception. David Montgomery rushed for 69 yards and a touchdown in the defeat with the Bears finishing the season at 8-and-8. Chicago did secure the seventh seed in the NFC after Arizona’s loss to the Rams. The Bears will open the postseason next Sunday against the NFC South champion Saints in New Orleans.
The NFL Wild Card round is set for this coming weekend. Saturday and Sunday will each consist of three games. On Saturday the Colts are visiting the Bills, the Seahawks will host the Rams and the Buccaneers will face Washington. On Sunday, the Ravens will take on the Titans, the Bears are at the Saints and the Steelers host the Browns. Both the Packers and the Chiefs have a bye this weekend.
In the semi finals for college football
Top-ranked Alabama beat Number 4 Notre Dame 31-14 on New Year’s Day in the relocated Rose Bowl game and number 3 Ohio State dominated 2nd ranked Clemson with a 49-28 victory in the Sugar Bowl. The Buckeyes head to the NCAA championship game to face number 1 Alabama on January 11th at the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami.
Other major Bowl game results.
- Peyton Ramsey threw three touchdown passes and ran for a score as Northwestern defeated Auburn 35-19 in the Citrus Bowl.
- Iowa State grinded out a 34-17 win over Oregon in the Fiesta Bowl and Texas A&M beat North Carolina 41-27 in the Orange Bowl
There was college basketball on Saturday.
Kofi Cockburn had 14 points and 10 rebounds, Ayo Dosunmu scored 12 as number 15 Illinois beat Purdue 66-58. The Fighting Illini won their seventh consecutive Big Ten home game dating to last season.
- Northwestern fell to unbeaten Michigan 85-66. The WIldcats dropped to 6-and-3 and will host Illinois on Thursday.
- Notre Dame lost on the road to North Carolina 66-65 at Chapel Hill
- Northern Illinois was hammered by Bowling Green 68-42 at home in Dekalb.
NIU has fired basketball coach Mark Montgomery after a 1-7 start. Montgomery had just two winning seasons since he took over in 2011 and led the Huskies to a 124-170 record. Associate Head Coach Lamar Chapman will lead the team on an interim basis for the remainder of the 2021 season.
Over in the NBA
Zach LaVine poured in a game-high 39 points to lead the Bulls to a 118-108 win over the Mavericks at the United Center yesterday. Coby White added 23 points for Chicago, which improves to 3-and-4. The Bulls visit the Portland Blazers tomorrow night.
In the NHL
The Chicago Blackhawks and forward Dylan Strome are agreeing to a two-year contract extension with the Hawks. Strome tallied 38 points in 58 games last season with Chicago.