Just wanted to follow up on Jeff’s story in the paper today and something we touched on last week down in Frisco regarding the 2013 schedule; Gene Taylor told me last week he does not anticipate Western Carolina coming to Fargo on September 21st next season, now leaving NDSU with the challenge of trying to find a 6th home game, most of you will remember last year that this process went into March before the Bison inked a deal with Prairie View for 250 K; the most they had ever paid to get a team here, and likely it will take that again to get a team to come here. Why WCU is backing out is simple; the Catamounts are playing 3(!) FBS teams next season; starting at Middle Tennessee State (Aug. 31); Virginia Tech (Sept. 7th) and then Auburn (Oct. 21st) and figure those paydays will offset the 150 K they need to pay NDSU to get out of the game. When you add the Catamounts will play 4 Southern Confernece road games; that makes 7 total and just 4 home games currently; you can see why a trip to Fargo wouldn’t be in their best interests. WCU joins at least a handful of teams I know of that will play 3 FBS next year, which is outrageous, but when you need to pay the bills, that’s the way you do it.
Now as far as the theory I put out last week about UND; now that each team appears to have September 21st open, it was a long-shot that it was ever going to happen and Taylor’s comments to Jeff seem to cement that it won’t happen next season, even though it makes sense for both parties. Think of it this way; NDSU figures to have one of it’s strongest teams in history perhaps; coming off a 2nd straight national title and what way to generate even more buzz about the 2013 season by adding UND to a non-conference schedule that already includes Kansas State and Montana State. For UND, they have a schedule where they don’t leave the state for the entire 1st month of the season, including home games with SDSU, Montana and Montana State, for a team that likely will start a redshirt freshman at quarterback; but also gives them a chance to showcase their dynamic offense against the best defense in the defense. I already know the responses that I’m going to get on this so I appreciate your comments, concerns and no I dont take any drugs.
Much has been made of the impact of the terrific 2010 recruiting class, but just looking back at the 2009 class there are several players there that can be credited with helping turn this team around; who redshirted that 3-8 campaign; Ryan Drevlow, Andrew Grothmann, Tyler Gimmestad, Cole Jirik, Taylor Nelson, Leevon Perry, Kevin Vaadeland, Brock Jensen, Sam Ojuri, Derrick Lang and Danny Luecke. That doesn’t include guys that played right away like Garrett Bruhn and Bobby Ollman and three guys beset by injuries whose careers are either done or likely done in Jeff Jerve, Hank Jacobs and Justin Juckem. Maybe we should have seen the turnaround with that class before the explosion of 2010.