Bison Video Blog: Bison football schedule finalized

Join WDAY sports director Dom Izzo and The Forum’s Jeff Kolpack for the latest Bison Video Blog. Make sure to follow Dom and Jeff on Twitter @DomIzzoWDAY and @FGOSPORTSWRITER.

31 thoughts on “Bison Video Blog: Bison football schedule finalized

  1. Weber State seems like a decent FCS add to the schedule. Glad that it’s set now, and we don’t need to worry about which creampuff GT would have to pay too much to come to the Dome.

    Dom & Jeff – I am not a wrestling fan. I have never watched the Bison wrestling team. That being said, the current squad is ranked nationally. I think those athletes and staff deserve just a little bit of attention on the blog.

  2. It’s only February and the Bison football schedule for next fall is complete. Hasn’t happened this early in many years. Way to get a good schedule wrapped up. It will be fun to give a beat down to the two Big Sky schools!!

  3. dom can you and mcfooly shut up now about scheduling for another year? maybe forever? thank you.

    NDSU wrestling vs Wyoming and SDSU should be great back to back events and lets get BisoNation out there and pack the BSA!!

  4. Love that the schedule is complete early, but that’s about all there is to love with this schedule.

    A) shouldn’t be playing 12 games
    B) if they are going to play 12 games, then there should be 7 home games
    C) there is nothing to gain and everything to lose by playing full scholarship/full strength FCS teams non-conference.

    Elaborating on C: the MVFC is already the toughest conference in FCS, both in terms of how hard it is to win conference games and how hard the conference teams beat on each other physically.

    If NDSU takes care of business in the MVFC games, that proves everything they need to prove to the FCS playoff selection committee. In other words, there is zero gain from playing additional hard teams in the non-conference schedule!

    I agree with scheduling one B1G or Big 12 program for a challenge, but the other two (or three) non-conference games need to be a) home games and b) wins! Doesn’t matter if you have to buy lower level FCS teams to come to Fargo. Also doesn’t matter if you buy up to a single game per year with a DII.

    D) NDSU’s program is at the point where tailgating lots will be full and the game will be sold out NO MATTER who the opponent is during the non-conference schedule. That’s a fact.

    So you take A through D together, and it leaves you wondering why on earth did they schedule two Big Sky teams as alternating home/home for 2014/2015??

    Final thought, with 2015 non-conference schedule already dictating a trip out to Missoula and a visit from Weber St, in a year where only 11 games can be scheduled — does NDSU even schedule an FBS game? Or do they bring in a team for a sixth home game? I’d lean for the latter unless they could negotiate an incredibly large payday (it’d have to be something like 4-time national champion NDSU vs. national champion Ohio St for $750k on ESPN)

    • I hear your points, but disagree with a couple, from what we have seen from the playoff committee over the past couple of years; it doesn’t matter WHO you beat, it only matters how many WINS you have. NDSU went 15-0 and yet somehow was placed behind Eastern Illinois in the final Simple Ratings System. We saw 3 teams get into the FCS playoffs this past year; Tennessee State, Jacksonville State and SC State that had nothing outstanding on their resumes at all, except one thing; they all had wins; combined for 27 among the three and they didn’t beat anyone! So let’s take that to NDSU; let’s say they go 8-4, and using your premise of playing in the best conference in FCS, that should be enough to make the playoffs. But on the flip side of that, if NDSU isn’t the NDSU of the past three years, is the Valley still number one? Unless you have a BCS win like the Bison did last year; I don’t believe so. Remember no Valley team besides NDSU has made the quarterfinals since 2011, when UNI got trounced at Montana.

      While I won’t argue about the crowds for home games, as a person who covers the team I’ll say better competition to come into the Dome is long overdue. Montana State would have been fantastic to see last September and I think Montana this coming year will be off the charts, the best non-conference game for NDSU at home since Sam Houston in 2007.

      I think it’s a foregone conclusion that NDSU will not schedule a FBS team in 2015 unless like you said they get a Godfather “offer they can’t refuse” which I don’t see coming.

      • Thanks for the reply Dom.

        Sounds like we’re in complete agreement, that the Big Sky teams should not have been scheduled.

        Your points about the selection committee taking teams because of wins and NOT because of strength of schedule backs up the fact that NDSU shouldn’t be playing Weber and Montana this season.

        Say because say NDSU loses to Iowa St and Montana and then beats Weber and IW, then goes 6-2 in the MVFC – which let’s assume it’s an extraordinary year and that there are two teams at the top that went 7-1 in the league.

        As you say, without NDSU being on top anymore – I don’t NDSU gets in at 8-4 as the 3rd team from the Valley.

        Therefore they should’ve played a low level FCS team at home instead of Montana. That gets NDSU into the playoffs at 9-3. And once they’re in, they’re hosting and once we’re hosting we have a better chance to do well and make a run.

        Your only point in disagreement seems to be pretty weak. A) if you’re a true fan of NDSU football, then you come to the Fargodome to watch NDSU’s team! Not whoever the other team is! Plus tailgating and the whole gameday atmosphere. That’s what NDSU football is. It’s not “oh, who is the opponent this week??? Oh NOW I’m excited!”
        B) the best FCS competition comes to the Fargodome every season. If the MVFC teams aren’t good enough for you to buy a ticket, then stay home! Someone else will buy it.

        Just say NO to full strength/full scholarship FCS teams in the non-conference schedule.

        Gene laid an egg with the schedule for the next two years and it could well keep NDSU from the playoffs in both.

        • I guess I don’t understand the reasoning for playing “lesser teams” to secure wins, always believed NDSU wanted to play the best competition, remember fan reaction when the Montana games were announced and people were pumped about the games, I can’t count how many comments/tweets I’ve received from fans upset about playing Ferris State last year or Delaware State, automatic wins, those games are forgotten, but how many remember Sam Houston St? The FCS needs more of these games like NDSU/Montana, heck ESPN was considering putting the game on national TV a week before the season actually began because the matchup is so good. I don’t think you can worry about potential losses, then why bother playing?

          • Fair and valid point Dom. Once in which I think many NDSU fans share the same sentiment.

            So here is my simple reply/question back to you and those who share that way of thinking:

            what gets you more excited? A) playing “big time” non-conference games against Montana or B) playing in the playoffs?

            The assumption of mutual exclusivity is no longer valid, starting in 2014!

        • NDSU will NOT have a problem with the Big Sky teams. NDSU also can’t just go out name their schedule at will. Every team is looking out for themselves and NDSU has to do the best they can, and I think this a relatively favorable schedule.

        • I’d say NDSU with an 8-4 record gets into the playoffs, not with strength of schedule but rather NDSU will outbid the other teams on the bubble

    • I agree that the schedule for this fall doesn’t look as good as the schedule for last year, but some years, that’s going to happen. Also, I wouldn’t call Weber State a “full strength FCS team”. They are full scholarship, but they just aren’t very good. Montana shouldn’t strike a lot of fear in the hearts of Bison fans because NDSU has matched up REALLY well against Big Sky teams in recent years. There’s no reason to think that would change this fall.
      About paying gobs of money for FCS/Div. II teams to come to Fargo – first of all, the money has to come from somewhere, and you don’t want to start the precedent of paying an arm and a leg for teams to come to Fargo.

      • And how good were the Bison in 2009. Stuff happens and teams grow in talent and ability. You can never take anything for granted. Look how many FBS have been taught that lesson by the Bison? I for one believe that victory over Kansas St. was a growing process in experience and confidence. It did a lot of good preparing the Bison for meeting their goals of an unbeaten season. Those FBS games have paid many reward for the Bison when it comes to national recognition? Remember game day. Easy schedules harm reputations more than build them. I for one can’t stand the almighty SEC and their cupcake games. Pointless at best.

    • Ask Youngstown St last year how well their creampuff OOC schedule set them up for a playoff bid after winning 5 of their 8 MVFC games. The MVFC is tough and winning more than 5 conference games isn’t easy in any year, that’s why strong OOC schedules help. The only MVFC teams to ever make the playoffs with 5 or less conference wins was SDSU last year (played Butler, @UND, SELA, and @Nebraska OOC), Illinois St in 2012 (played Dayton, @EMU, and EIU OOC), and NDSU in 2010 (played @KU, USD, and Morgan St OOC). All three of those teams scheduled well and played well out of conference.

      It’s also not as easy as just saying “pay whoever who need to and get them in the dome for a guarantee game”. Taylor has said on numerous occasions while looking for a game last year that teams were basically out the fleece the Bison for guaranteed money because they know how much the Bison had paid in the past and they were asking for more than that. Eventually you start losing money paying teams that much even with sell outs. This gets a home game in 2015 where one was desperately needed for no cost except to play an extra game in 2014 which benefits the 2014 team trying to break in a lot of guys on the two deep.

      My final point is that playing 11 games this year would’ve been silly because both byes would’ve been in September. Last year was an ideal schedule to have 2 byes because the MVFC gave the Bison an off week during the November conference schedule. This year they gave them 8 straight weeks of conference games to end the year so giving a team that needs experience on the depth chart two bye weeks in the first month of the season doesn’t help much.

  5. Ah yes! Renewal of the great NDSU/Weber St. Rivalry. What tradition. Goes all the way back to’ 04. Never mind that one that goes back to ’94 (18 that is). You Johnny-come -latlies wouldn’t know anything about that. Where is Jim Adelson when we need him?

  6. What is the background regarding only being able to play 11 games in 2015? Why the change from 12 to 11? Is this a one time reduction? Please explain.

  7. Dom and Jeff – enjoy this blog immensely and you can talk schedule (or anything else!) any time………..
    1) 2015 looks suspiciously like a possible UND game, with no FBS currently scheduled?
    2) How far out do most FBS teams schedule? I was looking at the Iowa St. schedule and they have No. Iowa and/or Iowa for many upcoming years.
    3) I thought Gene T. was talking to UND recently? Home and home would be great in ’15 and ’16. New coaches = time to renew the rivalry

    • If UND is scheduled in 2015, that means NDSU’s schedule is: three full scholarship/full strength Big Sky programs in non-conference, eight full scholarship/full strength MVFC programs in conference.

      That’s asking a little much of our players, in my opinion! 2-1 and 6-2 would be considered an excellent campaign, but 8-3 overall does not guarantee NDSU gets into the playoffs.

      • You seem hung up on full scholarship teams. FYI most of the schools we play are full scholarship so I dont see what the big deal is and certainly dont think its asking too much of our players. So what did you want? Schedule some D2 team?

  8. Weber State game will be a good road trip and the stadium is built right into the Wasatch Range for beauty. Salt Lake City is an affordable direct flight from FGO and the weather will likely be mighty warm still there in early Sept. I went to Utah State v Wyoming game two years ago and really enjoyed the trip. Plenty of outdoor adventures there.

  9. I don’t see this team losing 4 games. If it was mostly freshman maybe but there is just enough seniors to keep it going my guess 10-2. If they lose 4 to who? I think this coaching staff just might be better than the one that left. I feel sorry for the rest of the FCS who thought the end of era is here but it’s just the beginning. Now let’s get back to current sports and let football take a back seat for now.

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