North Dakota State returns to Frisco, Texas for the seventh time this January as the Bison will go for history, attempting to become the first FCS program to win seven national championships. Over the next ten days, we’ll look back at the ten biggest moments NDSU has had in its previous six title game appearances.
NUMBER SEVEN, 2013 FCS Championship Game: The second version of NDSU-Sam Houston State was a tie game at halftime when the Bison defense flexed its muscles in the second half. It began with a Carlton Littlejohn interception that set up a Brock Jensen touchdown run to give the Bison a 17-10 lead. On the next possession, the Bison defense got after Sam Houston quarterback Brian Bell, led by sophomore Kyle Emanuel, who blasted Bell to the ground on 4th down. NDSU took over its own 35 yard line and drove down the field, capped off by Sam Ojuri touchdown run and the game seemed out of reach at 23-10.
A typical extra point attempt was set to follow, but chaos ensued. A bad snap by Michael Murphy (a rarity) was fumbled by Ben LeCompte, who didn’t panic as players were bearing down on him, lateraled the ball to kicker Adam Keller. Keller, also under pressure just lobbed the ball to the endzone, where somehow sophomore Mike Hardie was waiting. Hardie caught the ball for a two point conversion, extending the Bison lead to 25-10. The yellow clad crowd in Frisco roared. The play typified the day, as NDSU cruised to a second straight national championship by the final score of 39-13. The two point play became infamous, landing on ESPN’s SportsCenter’s Top Ten Plays of the Day.