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Football returning to Wrigley Field

Football returning to Wrigley Field

NEW YORK -- There will be football again at Wrigley Field.

The Cubs and Northwestern University are expected to announce on Friday that Northwestern and Illinois will play a Big Ten football game at Wrigley on Nov. 20. The ballpark, which has been the Cubs' home since 1916, also was the home stadium for the Chicago Bears from 1921 to 1970.

It was at Wrigley, on Dec. 12, 1965, that rookie halfback Gale Sayers tied the record for touchdowns in a single game, with six in the Bears' victory over the 49ers.

In recent years, Wrigley has hosted more than just baseball, with concerts for Jimmy Buffett, The Police, Elton John and Billy Joel, and Rascal Flatts, as well as the NHL Winter Classic between the Chicago Blackhawks and Detroit Red Wings on New Year's Day 2009.

Officials from the Cubs, Northwestern and the Bears will hold a news conference on Friday at Wrigley to announce the game.

The ballpark once held the record for the most NFL games played in a single stadium, with 365 regular-season games, but that mark has been surpassed. The Bears added a portable bleacher section that spanned the right- and center-field areas and covered most of the existing bleacher seating. With the additional seating, Wrigley's football capacity was around 46,000.

The football field at that time ran north to south, so it went from left field to the foul side of first base.

Yankee Stadium also will be hosting college football this year -- and on the same date, with Notre Dame playing Army. Yankee Stadium will be the host site for a series of Army home football games -- against Rutgers in 2011, Air Force in 2012 and Boston College in 2014. It will also host the annual bowl game between the Big East Conference and the Big 12 Conference, with the first game to be played at the conclusion of the 2010 college football regular season.

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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