No. 1 North Dakota State Closes Out Regular Season at No. 11 Illinois State on Saturday
Release: November 12, 2012
complete release attached
No. 1-ranked North Dakota State (9-1, 6-1 Valley Football) is scheduled to close out the regular season on the road at No. 11 Illinois State (8-2, 5-2 Valley Football) in a Missouri Valley Football Conference game at 12:05 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 17, at Hancock Stadium (FieldTurf/7,700) in Normal, Ill. ... NDSU defeated South Dakota State 20-17 to claim the Dakota Marker and clinch a share of a second straight MVFC championship ... Illinois State had a bye week after defeating Indiana State 17-10 on Nov. 3.
SERIES RECORD: This is the sixth meeting between North Dakota State and Illinois State in a series that started in 2007 ... NDSU leads the series 3-2 ... The Bison defeated the Redbirds 20-10 last season in Fargo (recap on page 4).
ON THE ROAD: North Dakota State is 10-0 on the road over the last two seasons ... The Bison have won 15 of their last 19 road games ... NDSU is 35-20 on the road since head coach Craig Bohl took over in 2003 ... NDSU is 12-7 in MVFC road games.
TELEVISION: The game will be televised on ESPN3.com and the North Dakota NBC Sports Network ... Former Valley News Live weekend sports anchor Brian Shawn will handle the play-by-play, and KFYR TV Sports Director Lee Timmerman is the color analyst ... Stations on the North Dakota NBC Sports Network include KVLY-TV (Channel 11, Fargo), KFYR-TV (Channel 5, Bismarck), KMOT-TV (Channel 10, Minot), KQCD-TV (Channel 7, Dickinson) and KUMV-TV (Channel 8, Williston) ... All 11 regular season games in 2012 will be televised for the first time in school history ... The Bison are 109-57-1 (.656) in TV games.
RADIO BROADCASTS: KFGO-AM 790, Fargo ... Veteran sports announcer Scott Miller will handle the play-by-play ... Former NDSU quarterback Steve Walker will handle the color duties, while NDSU director of athletic broadcasting Jeremy Jorgenson is on the sidelines ... Air time is set for 11:30 a.m., kickoff at 12:05 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 17 ... Anchored by flagship, The Mighty 790, KFGO-AM, the Bison Radio Network has 20 stations including (Fargo, simulcast on KRWK 101.9 FM); ESPN 710 AM (Bismarck); KHRT 1320 AM (Minot); KSJB 600 AM (Jamestown); KEYZ 660 AM (Williston); KDVL 102.5 FM (Devils Lake); KHND 1470 AM (Harvey); KZZJ 1450 AM (Rugby); KPOK 1340 AM (Bowman); KAUJ – 100.9 FM (Grafton); KLTC 1460 AM (Dickinson); KRCQ 102.3 FM (Detroit Lakes); WLKX 95.9 FM (North) / KBGY 107.5 FM (South) (Minneapolis/St. Paul); KDDG 105.5 FM (Albany); KZCR 103.3 FM (Fergus Falls); KMGK 107.1 FM (Glenwood), and KKCQ 96.7 FM (Fosston) ... The Bison gameday format includes a 30-minute pregame show with comments from Craig Bohl, in-depth analysis and features ... A complete 30-minute postgame show is covered from the press box and locker room areas.
OLSON, LECOMPTE EARN VALLEY FOOTBALL PLAYER OF THE WEEK HONORS: North Dakota State linebacker Grant Olson was named Missouri Valley Football Conference Defensive Player of the Week, while punter Ben LeCompte was selected Newcomer of the Week following their performance vs. South Dakota State (11-10-12) ... Olson, a 6-foot, 223-pound junior from Plymouth, Minn. (Wayzata H.S.), had eight tackles including three solos and 1.5 sacks ... He led a defense that held SDSU to a season-low 209 yards of total offense and 11 first downs including 46 rushing yards. The Bison defense had seven tackles for loss including five sacks ... LeCompte, a 5-foot-11, 197-pound redshirt freshman from Barrington, Ill. (Barrington H.S.), punted five times for an average of 49.8 yards including a long of 63 yards to turn the field over ... He averaged 60 yards on five kickoffs.
TOUGH GOING: After limiting South Dakota State to 209 yards on Nov. 10, North Dakota State has held 10 of its last 11 opponents to under 250 yards of total offense, dating back to the FCS Championship game victory over Sam Houston State ... The 11 rushing yards by Southern Illinois were the lowest yielded since Concordia-St. Paul was limited to minus-14 in 2006 ... The 76 yards given up at South Dakota (10-20-12) was the lowest total offense yardage allowed since Moorhead State was limited to 66 (43 rushing, 23 passing) in 2000 ... Missouri State’s 22 passing yards were the lowest allowed since Minnesota State Moorhead’s 23 in 2000 ... USD’s four first downs were fewest since NDSU allowed three vs. Minnesota State Moorhead in 2000.
DON’T TREAD ON ME: North Dakota State leads the nation in scoring defense (11.0 avg/g), total defense (183.50 avg/g), rush defense (62.70 avg/g), pass defense (120.80 avg/g), defense 3rd down efficiency (24.58 pct.) and first downs allowed (10.20 avg/g) ... The Bison defense has allowed only two rushing touchdowns (at Missouri State, 11-3-12; at UNI, 9-29-12) and 10 overall ... NDSU has allowed 100 yards on the ground once through 10 games ... Missouri State had 127 rushing yards on Nov. 3 ... Only one of 10 opponents have passed for over 200 yards, UNI had 213 on Sept. 29 ... NDSU has 68 tackles for loss, 27 QB hurries, 26 sacks, 25 pass breakups, 12 fumble recoveries and eight interceptions.
DRIVE TIME: North Dakota State leads the nation in time of possession at 36-minutes, 3-seconds ... The Bison played “keep-away” for season-high 40:48 in the 23-17 win over Southern Illinois (10-27-12) ... That included a season-high scoring drive of 10:03 (16 plays, 66-yards) ... On the average, NDSU has held the ball for 18:56 out of 30-minutes in the second half including 9:39 in the third quarter ... The Bison kept the ball for 13:19 out of 15-minutes during the third quarter in the win at Colorado State ... The Bison are averaging 8.85 plays covering 53 yards in 4-minutes, 31-seconds on 55 scoring drives.
NDSU CORNERBACK MARCUS WILLIAMS ON BUCHANAN WATCH LIST: Cornerback Marcus Williams was named to The Sports Network’s Buck Buchanan Watch List in July ... The award honors the outstanding defensive player in the FCS ... Former NDSU and Denver Broncos linebacker Joe Mays was a finalist for the Buchanan Award in 2007 ... A first-team Sports Network/Fathead.com and Associated Press performer in 2011, Williams picked off seven passes and returned two for TDs last season ... In his career, he has scored six times overall including four interceptions, a lateral and a kickoff ... Williams recorded his fourth interception of the season and 15th of his career with 3:37 left in the fourth quarter vs. Southern Illinois (10-27-12) ... He had a 98-yard pick six against Youngstown State (10-6-12) ... Williams is second all-time in interceptions at NDSU trailing only Steve Krumrei (16/1967-69) ... He is currently tied for 13th in NCAA FCS in interceptions.
BISON QUICK-HITTERS: North Dakota State has attracted over 18,000 fans in 13 of its last 14 games at Gate City Bank Field ... The Bison offensive line, known as the “Rams” ranks 8th nationally in tackles for loss allowed (3.90 avg/g) ... NDSU posted its second shutout of the season and the program’s first in 36 Missouri Valley Football Conference games with the 54-0 win over South Dakota on Oct. 20 ... The Bison shutout Robert Morris 52-0 in the season opener ... The last time NDSU had two shutouts in a season was 2005 vs. Weber State (41-0) and Northern Colorado (44-0) ... Punter Ben LeCompte has punted 33 times for an average of 41.4 yards per attempt with a season-long of 65 yards vs. Southern Illinois (10-27-12) ... LeCompte has placed 13 inside the 20 and had five fair catches ... NDSU has allowed just 137 points in its last 14 contests, dating back to the start of the 2011 Division I FCS Playoffs ... The Bison have allowed just 123 points in their last 12 contests, dating back to a 24-0 shutout victory over Lehigh in the 2011 Division I FCS Quarterfinals ... NDSU has limited its opponent to 10 points or less in 12 of its last 25 games ... Defensive end Cole Jirik had 4 tackles including a safety, two tackles for loss and a sack in North Dakota State’s 22-7 win over Colorado State on Sept. 8 ... His safety with 5:34 left in the first quarter broke a 7-7 tie and gave the Bison the lead for good ... The safety was the first for North Dakota State since Matthew Gratzek’s against Robert Morris in the 2010 FCS playoff game ... North Dakota State’s field goal block by nose guard Ryan Drevlow at Colorado State (9-8-12) was the first since Matt Veldman’s effort against Illinois State (10-1-11) ... North Dakota State committed zero (0) turnovers in eight of 15 games played in 2011 and 11 times over its last 25 games ... The Bison committed only 12 turnovers overall in 15 games in 2011 ... With an 84-32 record, NDSU head coach Craig Bohl is No. 2 on the school’s all-time win list behind Rocky Hager (91-25-1, 1987-95) ... Bohl is one of three Bison coaches with 60 wins ... Wide receiver Zach Vraa caught a career and season-high eight passes for 156 yards and two touchdowns vs. Prairie View A&M (9-22-12)... His 69-yard TD reception was the longest for NDSU since Nick Mertens and Gary Williams hooked up on a school record 95-yard score against Illinois State on Oct. 3, 2009 ... His 156 yards receiving were the most for a Bison receiver since Warren Holloway had 184 on seven catches against Western Illinois on Oct. 2, 2010 ... North Dakota State’s 81 offensive plays against Colorado State (9-8-12) were its most since running 83 against Northern Iowa on Oct. 10, 2009.