Yes it’s back folks, the FCS Pick ‘Em segment, our fourth year of trying to predict games, we’ve got a new twist for this year that I can’t wait to introduce next week on the radio! This is our third year going for the FCS Nickel, Jeff won it in 2012, I won it last year and it’s back up for grabs this season. Some interesting games on the table, let’s see who takes an early lead!
The season is drawing closer, we nearly had our first FCS upset of the season pulled off by Abilene Christian over Georgia State tonight, but the Panthers pulled it out to win their first ever FBS game. Our first round of selections are listed below as is a special preview to Saturday’s return of the Bison PreGame Show!!
DOM (1-0) JEFF (1-0)
Missouri State at Northwestern St. Mo State Mo. State
As we near the full week 1 of the college football season, the FCS upsets tend to happen early, you don’t have to look too far with NDSU beating K-State and Eastern Washington taking out Oregon State. The slate this year isn’t as compelling as 2013, but there’s some definite candidates to watch for:
NDSU at Iowa State (11 am Saturday, FOX Sports 1) This goes without saying as the Bison enter this matchup winners of 24 in a row and four straight against the FBS. Iowa State has a talented offense, but lots of questions on defense, something that the Bison will look to attack on Saturday morning. ISU knows full well about how good the FCS is, losing its season opener to Northern Iowa last year so they won’t be surprised by the Bison, but this has been a perfect recipe game for NDSU in years past.
Villanova at Syracuse (6:30pm Friday, ESPN3) The Wildcats bring one of the best QB’s in the nation, John Robertson into this game at the Carrier Dome, ‘Nova lost by 10 to Boston College last season, this Syracuse team has talent, but will struggle in the ACC, keep an eye on this game on Friday night.
Northern Iowa at Iowa (11 am Saturday, Big Ten Network) The Panthers are highly touted this season, thanks to all-conference running back David Johnson, but there are some question marks with this team, including the status of its best defensive player, Jake Farley, as he tries to come back from a broken leg that he suffered last year against NDSU. UNI played a perfect game last year against Iowa State, they’ll need another one against a Hawkeyes team that has high hopes to get back into the Big 10 race, definitely a game Bison fans will be keeping an eye on Saturday for obvious reasons.
Montana at Wyoming (3 pm Saturday, Root Sports) I know Bison fans will laugh at this pick, but Montana has been known for knocking off the upper division, but if there’s one coach that will have his team prepared, it’s Craig Bohl. This game is intriguing for so many reasons, to see how Bohl’s team will play in it’s first game, to getting a look at the Griz as they come to Fargo September 20th. I don’t have a great feeling on Montana winning, but just keep an eye on it.
Other Options (Delaware at Pittsburgh – 11 am Sat, ESPN3; Youngstown State at Illinois – 11 am Sat, Big 10 Network; James Madison at Maryland – 2:30 Big 10 Network)
Join WDAY sports director Dom Izzo and The Forum’s Jeff Kolpack for the latest Bison Video Blog. Make sure to follow Jeff (@FGOSPORTSWRITER) and Dom (@DomIzzoWDAY) on Twitter to keep up with all the latest Bison news.
NDSU and UND will play once again in football. The two sides have agreed on a two game series beginning on September 19th, 2015 in Fargo and then again on September 7th, 2019 once again in Fargo. UND will receive 125,000 for the ’15 game and 140K for the 2019 game along with 500 tickets. Former NDSU AD Gene Taylor outlined the deal with UND AD Brian Faison. There’s a press conference scheduled for 12:30 this afternoon, WDAY will be carrying it live, stay tuned for more info.