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No UND player has been on the field more in the last three seasons than Dominique Hawkins. He's been UND's top cornerback and has played on virtually all of the Sioux special teams. In a sense, however, Hawkins had to start over for his senior season. He's been moved to safety, where he'll start Thursday night against Drake in UND's season opener. The move was made to help bolster the depth at safety. "I feel that the transition has gone well," Hawkins said. "I feel comfortable back there with the other safeties. I'll be a little nervous at first.
Last season, UND linebacker Dan Hendrickson wanted to play on every down. He also relished his role on the kickoff team as well, delivering a handful of bone-crunching hits. The Sioux inside linebacker was UND's biggest playmaker on defense, leading the Sioux with 78 tackles -- eight of them for lost yardage. Hendrickson again figures to be one of UND's biggest playmakers as the Sioux open their season Thursday night against Drake. His aggressiveness and versatility, however, may play an even bigger role for the Sioux during their first two weeks of the 2011 season.
There is no doubt that junior Mitch Sutton will be the starting tailback for UND when the Sioux open the season Thursday night against Drake. Sutton, the 2009 Great West Conference rookie of the year, is projected to be UND's go-to back. And sophomore Jake Miller, who played as a true freshman, will be Sutton's backup. The No. 3 running back on the Sioux depth chart, however, is still up in the air. But true freshman Jer Garman is making a strong case to end any doubt about the position. "It's a battle not a lot of people are talking about," UND coach Chris Mussman said of the No.
For the first 10 laps, Mark Dobmeier -- surprisingly -- was not guaranteed another win. Chris Shirek and Wade Nygaard had the cars to beat. "Chris and Wade definitely were the best two cars at the beginning of the race," Dobmeier said. But, as usual, Dobmeier was the car to beat at the end. Dobmeier inherited the lead with 15 laps to go, then cruised to another sprint win Friday night before an estimated 2,000 fans at River Cities Speedway during the track's season championship. It was Dobmeier's 14th win of the season. Dobmeier took over when Nygaard slid off Turn 2. Before his No.
With River Cities Speedway's fourth major night of racing in the rear-view mirror, the track looks ahead to the season's final big show -- the fifth annual John Seitz Memorial Late Model Invitational. The Seitz invitational is scheduled for Sept.
Greg Hardin's breakout game came in the second week of the 2010 season when the UND receiver caught six passes for 171 yards and a touchdown against Northern Illinois. UND's leading receiver from last season, however, caught only three passes for 26 yards in UND's final two games.
When Emmett Lynch arrived at UND, the junior offensive lineman from Lester Prairie, Minn., was bigger than most of his experienced teammates on the Sioux line. Now, he looks at the incoming Sioux offensive linemen and notices he doesn't have much of a size advantage anymore. "We're a lot bigger," said Lynch, a 6-foot-5, 306-pound guard. A look at the UND roster reveals that the five true freshmen linemen all stand 6-foot-5 or taller. And their average weight is approximately 285 pounds.
When UND moves all of its practices to the afternoons, it usually means one thing for incoming Sioux freshmen. They've been moved to the scout team -- the unit that mimics UND's upcoming opponent. But there were two true freshmen taking reps with the third unit today at Memorial Stadium, where the Sioux practiced in 92-degree heat -- the hottest day of UND's fall camp. Receiver Jameer Jackson and running back Jer Garman weren't with the scout team as UND began some preparation for its season opener Sept.
The big question in UND's fall camp has yet to be answered. The starting quarterback for the Sioux in their season opener against Drake on Sept. 1 is still up in the air. But there are fewer and fewer questions about UND's offense as a whole. UND wrapped up its practice today at Memorial Stadium with the Sioux offense showing more signs of improvement. "Offensively, we're better than we were even at the end of spring ball," UND coach Chris Mussman said.
One thing is certain when the World of Outlaws race at River Cities Speedway. The race won't be decided until the last lap. Another WoO feature went down the wire again Friday night at RCS, where nearly 5,000 fans watched Steve Kinser -- the King of the Outlaws -- pass Donny Schatz on the last corner of the last lap to win the 40-lap feature. Kinser, a 20-time WoO champion, and Schatz staged a classic battle for the lead as both maneuvered their way through heavy lapped traffic for most of the race.