Sponsored By
An organization or individual has paid for the creation of this work but did not approve or review it.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

UND FOOTBALL: Salukis, Sioux to meet in '08

UND hasn't completed its 2008 football schedule yet, but one game already has been circled on the calendar. The Sioux will play Southern Illinois on Nov. 1 in Carbondale, a game that likely will be one of UND's highlights in its first season of D...

UND hasn't completed its 2008 football schedule yet, but one game already has been circled on the calendar.

The Sioux will play Southern Illinois on Nov. 1 in Carbondale, a game that likely will be one of UND's highlights in its first season of Division I football.

Southern Illinois, which announced its schedule Tuesday, is coached by Dale Lennon, who resigned as Sioux coach in late December to take over the Saluki program - one of the country's top Division I Football Championship Subdivision teams.

UND coach Chris Mussman said his team will look forward to playing against their former coach, one who led the school to its only national championship.

"It's one of those games we haven't had in a while," Mussman said. "It'll be easy to get the guys excited for it.

ADVERTISEMENT

"At first, Dale and I were reluctant to play it. But in the end, everything matched up and it seemed like it was something we needed to do."

Both UND and Southern Illinois have had a difficult time in scheduling games. The success of both programs in recent years has not made the Sioux or the Salukis an attractive nonconference opponent.

UND has been a Division II power since the early 1990s. The Sioux beat Division I FCS teams Northern Iowa and Southern Utah the last two seasons. Southern Illinois finished 12-2 last season, advancing to the FCS semifinal round.

"It'll be one of those games that will have a lot of interest," said Lennon, who spent more than two decades at UND as a player, assistant coach and head coach. "The game will have a few side notes.

"The emotions leading up to the game will be unique, but once the whistle blows, it will be all business as usual. I do know, however, that without exception, every UND player, alumni and fan will have Nov. 1 circled on their calendar."

UND may announce its schedule within the next week, depending on negotiations with one or two schools. It's believed the Sioux have contracts for nine games, but the program wants to play at least 11 games in 2008.

The Sioux will be a member of the five-team Great West Football Conference, which includes South Dakota, Southern Utah, Cal Poly and UC Davis. It's still not clear whether UND will play three or four Great West games next season.

Lennon's Salukis will play 11 games next season. Southern Illinois opens with Hampton (Va.) University before taking on Northwestern of the Big Ten Conference.

ADVERTISEMENT

The contract between the schools calls for one game only. Lennon said Southern Illinois' 2009 tentatively is filled, but there will be opportunities for the teams to meet again down the road.

The Sioux the Salukis during their Gateway Football Conference schedule.

"We're excited to get the opportunity to go and see that part of the country and play one of the top FCS teams in the country," Mussman said.

Reach Nelson at 780-1128, (800) 477-6572 ext. 268 or wnelson@gfherald.com .

What To Read Next
Artificial intelligence can now act as an artist or a writer. Does that mean AI is ready to play doctor? Many institutions, including Mayo Clinic, believe that AI is ready to become a useful tool.
Josh Sipes was watching an in-flight movie when he became aware the flight crew were asking for help assisting a woman who was experiencing a medical problem.
Nonprofit hospitals are required to provide free or discounted care, also known as charity care; yet eligibility and application requirements vary across hospitals. Could you qualify? We found out.
Crisis pregnancy centers received almost $3 million in taxpayer funds in 2022. Soon, sharing only medically accurate information could be a prerequisite for funding.