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UND football: Boyle anchors defense

Attending UND football practice at Memorial Stadium, it doesn't take long to hear the emotional leader of the Sioux defense -- nose guard Ty Boyle. It also doesn't take long to see Boyle, a 6-foot-4, 286-pound junior who is more than 30 pounds le...

Ty Boyle
Ty Boyle is the starting noseguard for UND. Herald photo by Eric Hylden.

Attending UND football practice at Memorial Stadium, it doesn't take long to hear the emotional leader of the Sioux defense -- nose guard Ty Boyle.

It also doesn't take long to see Boyle, a 6-foot-4, 286-pound junior who is more than 30 pounds leaner than his freshman season.

Boyle, with strong leadership and a big frame, is expected to be the backbone of this year's Sioux defense.

"In the 3-4 defense, (nose guard is) the person that needs to absorb and take on double teams," UND co-defensive coordinator Mike Mannausau said. "Ty's size and strength gives us that advantage."

As a sophomore last season, Boyle was named all-Great West Conference honorable mention. He had seven tackles-for-losses and seven quarterback hurries.

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The excitement for Sioux coaches is that Boyle captured the honor as a backup. Boyle only started one game.

"It will be real interesting to see what he can do with all the reps," Mannausau said.

'Warrior mentality'

Not only is Boyle's strength ideal for the nose guard position, but his personality also lends to the spot.

"I prefer nose guard," Boyle said. "There's kind of a challenge. You know you're going to be double teamed most plays. There's a warrior mentality."

Mannausau said it's Boyle's work ethic that has the Sioux hoping for big things from the International Falls, Minn., native.

"Everything Ty has earned at UND, he has earned through hard work," Mannausau said. "Each year he has learned and made a big improvement."

Boyle isn't the only talented nose guard with the Sioux.

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Mannausau compared the depth on this year's team to that of 2005. That season, Ross Brennan (all-conference), Shane Duchscher and Adam Wolff (All-American) split time at the position.

Promising players

Broc Bellmore is second on the depth chart for the Sioux, while Devin Benjamin is listed as the third string.

Bellmore, a sophomore from West Fargo, is the strongest player in the Sioux program.

"The biggest thing now with Broc is he needs to play at a starter's level," Mannausau said. "He has to play with that intensity."

Coaches also like the promise of Benjamin, a 6-foot-3, 303-pound freshman.

"Devin has an incredible combination of size and speed," Mannausau said. "He has to become consistent now and get some game experience. He has the potential to be very good.

"We're going to need all three guys on the field. The strength of our defensive line is at nose guard."

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Boyle said the Sioux defense has something to prove this season after giving up more than 30 points in six of the team's last seven games.

"I think the last couple years, but last year in particular, people kind of said the defense was the weak spot of the team," Boyle said. "A lot of us took that personally. I think this year -- I know we haven't played any games yet so I don't want to jump the gun -- but if we need to be that part of the team that wins some games and keeps us in it, we're willing to put that on our backs."

Miller reports on sports. Reach him at (701) 780-1121; (800) 477-6572, ext. 121; or send e-mail to tmiller@gfherald.com .

Miller has covered sports at the Grand Forks Herald since 2004 and was the state sportswriter of the year in 2019.

His primary beat is UND football but also reports on a variety of UND sports and local preps.

He can be reached at (701) 780-1121, tmiller@gfherald.com or on Twitter at @tommillergf.
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