Jeff Kolpack covers North Dakota State athletics, the Fargo Marathon and golf for The Forum. His blog can be accessed at www.bisonmedia.areavoices.com. On the radio, Kolpack & Izzo sports talk show runs from 9-11 a.m. every Saturday morning. April through August, the WDAY Golf Show with Jeff Kolpack runs from 8-9 a.m.
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FARGO — The Dakota Marker has been hanging out in Brookings, S.D., for the last two years, the result of South Dakota State beating North Dakota State in a regular season football game. For Bison starters Dillon Radunz, Dan Marlette and Greg Menard, they had no say in the outcome last year. They were injured and missed the game. For linebacker Jabril Cox, he had a limited voice.
FARGO — North Dakota State and South Dakota State had such an easy time of it in the nonconference season that it was questionable if they even played a Division I FCS schedule. The Bison outscored their opponents by an average of 42-7 and it could have been worse. The Jackrabbits were even more dominating outscoring their two foes 68-10. Those two statistical facts will meet head on Saturday afternoon at Gate City Bank Field at the Fargodome. It's the Missouri Valley Football Conference opener and two of the best teams in the country will face off right away.
FARGO — The buses to carry the University of Delaware's football team from Gate City Bank Field at the Fargodome to nearby Hector International Airport could have started before the second quarter began Saturday, Sept. 22. On that note, the charter plane to fly the team back to Newark, Del., could have began preboarding operations at halftime.
FARGO—The city of Chihuahua, Mexico, is located about 260 miles south of El Paso, Texas. Or, for a better frame of reference for North Dakota State football fans, about 760 miles from Frisco, Texas. It's home to historical buildings and landmarks that date back to the 1700s that are well preserved today. The landscape is part desert, but the mountains surrounding the city are not far away. The hunting is good, which is a surprise to people not from there. The natural beauty is home to more than 800,000 people and that includes all 10 members of the Jones family.
FARGO — North Dakota State and the University of Delaware have never met on the football field, a series that will debut Saturday, Sept. 22, at Gate City Bank Field at the Fargodome. The Blue Hens are nothing new to Bison head coach Chris Klieman, however. As the defensive coordinator for Northern Iowa, he was tasked with trying to control the Delaware offense in the 2007 FCS quarterfinals. The Delaware quarterback was Joe Flacco and it didn't turn out well for the Panthers. Their season ended at home in the UNI-Dome with a 39-27 loss to the Blue Hens.
FARGO — They were career-best professional golf seasons for local players Tom Hoge and Amy Olson. Both are in their mid-20s and both made unprecedented strides this year in earnings and confidence. Yet, in a testament to how cruel the game can be, both feel like they left something on the course. "It was a step in the right direction but I'm not quite where I want to be as far as finishing off the year," Hoge said.
FARGO — The Delaware Field House was built in 1966 for basketball and indoor track and field at the University of Delaware. The modern use of the structure, a turfed indoor practice venue, will get a workout this week. It has nothing to do with weather, either. The Blue Hens, in prepping for Saturday's Division I FCS football clash at North Dakota State, will challenge the speaker levels to prepare for the crowd noise at Gate City Bank Field at the Fargodome.
FARGO—Fans watching the final two quarters of North Dakota State's win over North Alabama last Saturday, Sept. 15, saw a handful of true freshmen make their college debut for the Bison. In all, eight true freshmen have seen the field this year through two games. It's the result of a new NCAA rule that allows players who haven't redshirted to play up to four games without losing a season of eligibility. For the Bison, it's a new rule that has changed the way they practice.
FARGO—A familiar face in a purple North Alabama polo shirt was roaming the green-and-gold dominated tailgate area outside the Fargodome late Saturday morning, Sept. 15. When Dan Summy was at North Dakota State in the 1990s, he was an assistant athletic director who did some productive hand-shaking with the local boosters. The fundraising has morphed into a well-oiled machine at North Dakota State University, in much the same manner the football program has since it left NCAA Division II.
FARGO — North Dakota State had just committed its only turnover of the game against Cal Poly, a fumble, and the Mustangs took over at the Bison 7-yard line in the season opener two weeks ago. It was the fourth quarter and the visitors' first touchdown was well within sight. Moreover, NDSU had its backups in the game. In the case of defensive ends Spencer Waege and Logan McCormick, they were considered third-stringers. You would have never known it.