Photo: John J. Kim / Chicago Tribune 

Northwestern: Come for the academics, stay for the unexpectedly compelling football matchups.

Strap on your beer helmets and break out the war paint. Tomorrow evening, the Northwestern Wildcats will host the Ohio State Buckeyes at Ryan Field—arguably the Big Ten’s best primetime matchup this season. If you haven’t heard, it’s kind of a big deal.

On paper, the Wildcats aren't totally doomed.

Northwestern and Ohio State are both undefeated and ranked (albeit 12 spots apart), and head coach Pat Fitzgerald has the team looking its best in years. But turn that paper over and remember that Fitzgerald is 0-3 against the Buckeyes, who've won 28 of their 29 matchups against the Wildcats since 1971. 

Pair this with the 2012 Buckeyes' 4-0 on-road Big Ten record and, well, Northwestern fans are going to want something tall, cold, and alcoholic on hand tomorrow evening. Ohio State fans will be as hard to ignore as always.

Whatever side you're on, here are Chicago's NWU and OSU watering holes:

Northwestern Bars 

Kincade's, Lincoln Park
$10 Coors Light pitchers, $5 bloody marys, mimosas, jumbo screwdrivers, and salty dogs, $21 60-ounce fishbowls.
950 W. Armitage

Gamekeepers, Lincoln Park
$16 buckets.
1971 N. Lincoln

Mullen's, Lakeview
$4 Bud Light stadium cups, $5 Sunday Session pints, $4 Fireball shots.
3527 N. Clark


Ohio State Bars

McGee's, Lincoln Park/DePaul
$8 16-ounce Bud and Bud Light mugs.
950 W. Webster 

Vaughan's, Lakeview
$3 Pabst Blue Ribbon cans, $5 bloody marys, mimosas, and bombs.
2917 N. Sheffield

O'Donovan's, North Center
$5 22-ounce stadium cups ($4 refills), $3.50 Coronoa and Corona Light bottles, $4.50 Negra Modelo and Modelo Especial bottles.
2100 W. Irving Park