Some thoughts from the FCS title game teleconference

Some notes and quotes from today’s FCS title game teleconference:

  • NDSU head coach Craig Bohl said Ryan Smith’s hamstring injury is about 90 percent and he anticipates the senior receiver will be full-go for the Jan. 4 games. Bohl said Grant Olson (ACL) continues to practice. Olson will never be at 100 percent until well after surgery, but his presence means NDSU will have every available player for Towson.
  • Both Bohl and Towson coach Rob Ambrose emphasized the physical, ball control mentality of each other’s teams. It’s probably not a coincidence that the last two teams standing in FCS are two teams that can run the ball and play defense.
  • There is still no word on the status of Towson starting quarterback Peter Athens. Ambrose said the senior was being looked at by a trainer and a team doctor while he was on the conference call and the team’s first practice isn’t until tonight at 8 p.m. Athens hurt his shoulder in the semifinal game at Eastern Washington.
  • Bohl was asked to compare Towson’s Terrance West and South Dakota State’s Zach Zenner, two of the top backs in rushing in the FCS. “They’re different style of runners,” Bohl said. “First of all, Terrance is bigger. He’s got excellent change of direction and he’s able to break tackles.”
  • Ambrose has not been short on compliments of NDSU this week, calling it the Ivan Drago of the FCS and a team that is a perfect. Today, he opened with “It’s an honor to represent Towson University at the pinnacle against one of the greatest football teams in the history of history.”

57 thoughts on “Some thoughts from the FCS title game teleconference

  1. “History of history…”?

    That is a great line. Coach Ambrose, you should be a WWE manager!

  2. Are we still talking about this FCS game and not how we COULD be in a Bowl game if the bison had the Balls.

    did you folks see the games last night—-NON STOP MACTION!!!

    also, the tickets for this game are outrageous. $40-$60 for a championship game. Heck i can get in the prestigious TEXAS BOWL for 50 cents. Nobody will be scrambling for tickets when we rocking the Bowl Games.

    Seriously has anyone ever called the WAC yet!! Run N Shoot / Air Raid

    • Sam you are LAUGHABLE, especially with that last sentence.


      Remember how you and some other chumbalones said the WAC would be our FBS gravy train? If by gravy train you meant going over a cliff……

      FCS is just fine for NDSU right now. There is not point in spending the millions of dollars to move into some smalltime FBS conference to play bowl games in such scenic destinations as Detroit Michigan. Why on earth would you want to give up home playoff games for the right to get mugged in Detroit Pizza Bowl tailgates.

      Besides which the whole system is going to get reorganized soon. If and when that happens, NDSU will act in it’s best interests. For now, the Bison have been as high a profile in FCS as any MAC school.

  3. Good to hear that Ryan Smith will play, I sure hope he returns punts on Saturday. Dudzik makes me very nervous!

  4. How fun would it be to go to a bowl game like last night? 8:30 start in the middle of the week
    You saw the crowd right? I’ll take 3 home playoff games and a championship game (3 of these were on/will be on ESPN or ESPN2) anyday over a lame bowl game. Way more media time when you’re in the playoffs vs a meaningless bowl game. By the way, wasn’t it nice to have a total of 10 extra home games over the last 4 seasons? As Mike Tice would say, “enjoy the season”.

    • Nothing says big time FBS like getting mugged in the parking lot of a “Pizza Bowl” in scenic Detroit Michigan. Quick, lets blow millions of dollars to make a senseless move now!

  5. Ambrose seems to be using sarcasm when he talks about the Bison football program. I find it very disrespectful. I hope the Bison end all doubt early in the game.

    • This. I’ve had enough of the double edged “compliments”. It’s obvious to me that he is being disrespectful of NDSU Football, he can take his passive aggressive BS somewhere else. He’s trying so hard to be the “Rocky Underdog”. The first time he said it was kind of funny, now not so much.

  6. I agree with Bison. I don’t remember Bohl ever talking about an opponent like Ambrose did. I guess he will see in a week what being apart of history feels like.

  7. Think small be small fellow ndsu fans , its funny now that you have to go out of your way to put down fbs/bowls when it wasnt even in the blog?

    Same frisco same people same easy win. Its comical for any of you to putdown others when the ENTIRE SPORTING WORLD COULDN’T NAME 1 FCS TEAM. NDSU got more attendence in 3 games than the entire playoff field (without the 1 montana game)

    gene/dean should be lobbying and showing the presentations to mwc/mac every month!

    • Why exactly? None of those leagues are in the BCS and they’ll have even less stock in the new playoff system.

      The only way to do the move is to move into a major conference (Big 12, Big 10, etc). And they’re not coming to Fargo for a multitude of reasons that have nothing to do with how good our football program currently is.

      Besides which, the whole system will likely be blown apart in a few years when those major conference strike on their own. There will probably be another seperate level of college football and the lower tier conferences (MAC, MWC) will probably come either down to our level or the bigger schools in FCS will merge up with it. So why blow millions of dollars that could be invested to keep football an FCS power (and prop other programs) in a short sighted move to a lightly visible FBS conference that has no piece of the national championship/signficant TV money pie?

      People who cry about how it’s small time to be in FCS are hysterical. The fact some of you still feel NDSU is too “small time” directly reflects on your own personality. This program is as visible as a lot of the teams in FBS conferences you want them to move too and a helluva lot more viable. Moving to some dinky FBS conference and playing in fourth tier bowl games sounds small time to most objective fans.

    • Most of the Sporting world couldn’t name most of the FBS bowl games and which teams are even playing in them either.
      I could care less if someone in California or New York could or couldn’t name an FCS team.
      The playoff ride and championships in FCS is fun. I say stay with FCS until there is a real good situation to step into and then make the move. Don’t just move to FBS so you can say you’re in FBS and play in the Whatever Bowl with a 6-6 record against mediocre FBS teams in a bottom conference.
      NDSU received more national attention (ESPN) throughout the season than some of the bowl participants this year. LA Lafayette, Buffalo ,MId. Tenn.,Ark. State, Vanderbilt, Ohio, and Minnesota(except for Jerry Kill’s health issues) just to name a few of the many bowl participants with little national attention.

  8. Who is this Sam guy?? You guys stalking me cause your barking up the wrong tree.

    Sun belt 2014
    Auto bid with expanded playoffs 2016
    Multiple FBS titles in the future
    Think big people

    • aaaaaaaaaaccccccckkkkkkkk…………….
      Sun Belt? MAC? Why?
      Mid-week games during the season and mid-week MINOR bowl invites? Why? To play Bowling Green on a Tuesday night in Oct.?
      To play Syracuse in front of nobody in Houston/Texas Bowl?
      Doesn’t seem like a step up at all.
      GO BISON!!!!!!
      Bison 28 Towson 10 (I think that is what I posted last time)

    • The Sun Belt, MAC, CUSA and those conferences are NEVER….repeat….NEVER getting an autobid to the FBS playoffs. There’s no requirement that every conference gets a piece of the pie at that level, it’s all about money. The FBS playoffs will be a cash cow compared to the FCS Playoffs and they won’t have to expand ala FCS letting Pioneer League in. The big money schools will get any bids to the playoffs. Maybe the Mountain West can get in there but doubtful. So if we’re in the Sun Belt it’s an eternity of Pizza Bowl titles. Goody Goody, Pizza Pizza!!

      Strike Two. Do you want to take your third swing and miss at this epic fail of a move proposal?

  9. Yes, Ambrose appears to be pompous and arrogant. He needs a taste of Bison football. My assessment is based not only on his “history or history” statement – but on his opinion that something must be wrong with the system (Walter Payton award), if his boy did not win. January 4th should be a reality check for the man.

  10. I was a big fan of Coach Bohl until hearing news of him trying to recruit some of NDSU’s offered recruits while still supposedly coaching the Bison.
    I’ve got no problem with him going after the same recruit, but do have a problem with this happening now and not a week from now when his job here is complete. I thought the reason for him staying was to not shake up a good thing with the players’ and coaches’ goals. At this point our team could win whether Mr. Bohl (not Coach) is standing there with his goofy smile or not.

    I hope the players pour Gatorade over Klieman’s head when all is said and done and not Bohl. His head is obviously somewhere else.

    I also hope that recruits on the fence can see what type of person Mr. Bohl really is and make the best decision for themselves.

    Go Bison!!!

  11. My guess is that if Ambrose is comparing NDSU to a fictional character that all of his accolades are also ficticious.

  12. Is Ambrose the ultimate sand bagger. I think he hopes to lull us to sleep with him almost saying they have no chance.

  13. And if Ambrose would have said anything less, some morons would have viewed that as disrespect to the #1 seed. Find something else to complain about, and in the words of Mike Tice; ENJOY THE SEASON

    • It’s all cliché and trying to avoid the bulletin board quote.
      If NDSU is Ivan Drago, maybe he was trying to bait Bohl into saying Towson is Apollo Creed, when Ambrose was going for Rocky Balboa.
      In any event, the game will be a heavyweight bout, in contrast to the playoffs so far.

  14. Since Ivan Drago was a huge favorite but ended up losing his title fight to an underdog Rocky, my guess is this is Ambrose’s way of making his team the David that will defeat the seemingly unbeatable Goliath. I think the man is ultra-intelligent and a huge motivator. Given Bohl is busy stealing NDSU recruits and shitting on his current employer to gain favor with his future employer, Ambrose’s tactics may very well work.

    Someday you will all despise Bohl for what he did to this championship and to this recruting class which should have been epic after GameDay was here. But, keep lapping up at the Bohl trough folks and thinking FBS is greener pasture. Someday you’ll get it.

  15. Steve Halstrom talked on his show this morning about Coach Bohl offering Bison verbal recruits full rides to Wyoming, Can anybody confirm this?

  16. In the mac ndsu would have 1 home Thursday night on espn game every 2 years, you act like its 5 /year fools.

    Yes the bowl game get more tv viewers but look at the entire season. Whod u rather play.

    High school teams like indiana st missouri st sdsu or Boise St Fresno wyoming colorado st Nevada in the fargodome?

    Sad thing is you small time nodakers have no clue how big NDSU could be on a national scale think Nebraska Boise St Kansas State! Quit thinking like aw shucks hoople sheep farmers think wow NDSU could be bigtime

  17. The bowl games are a joke. No one is in the stands and the teams aren’t very good. The beauty of the FCS is that if you play well, not perfect, but well, you are playing for a National Championship. Oregon, Michigan, Texas, Notre Dame, etc. stopped playing for a national Championship several weeks ago. Towson, SDSU, Coastal Carolina, NAU, etc. we’re all playing for a National Championship within the last 2-3 weeks. All of the recent FCS playoff games were better than the recent Bowl games. No reason to jump to the FBS until they go to a 20 game playoff.

  18. We arent talking sunbelt NDSU should be marketing itself to mountain west period end of story.

    Mac wont invite ndsu cuz wed dominant them in 1 year & lead in attendance they dont want that

  19. We can move up. Why? The program should grow to the size the market can support. Right now the program is perfect for the market. With continued success the tight seating in the FFD will become restrictive and prices will rise. It will be become premier ticket and a stiff price. Some think it is now. Demand, if that happens, will drive the new stadium

    I have the game called like this: 35-26 NDSU Bison. I put the over/under at 60 like last week and I think the Bison can cover the 9 pts.

    Much like NDSU, Towson is a beautifully balanced team with a good run defense. If they begin to dominate in any phase of the game and hold NDSU neutral it could be a long afternoon.

    I think it unfolds like a lot of good games in the past. It has the potential of last years GSU extravaganza.

    • Who was the last team to score more than 20 points on the Bison defense? If somebody is going to beat the Bison they will have to hold the Bison offense to less than the Bison defense holds their offense. I don’t see Towson as capable of doing that.

      Bison 56 Towson 10

      • When the GAM (Game Analyzer Mechinism) is used the 35-26 is not literal but very important for 3 reasons: 1) It predicts the over/under 2) It shows the spread 3) It predicts the winner. It does this without fail. It doesn’t predict the final score but it gives you a leg up.

        If the GAM is wrong its an upset.

    • I’m neither an advocate nor a detractor of an NDSU move to FBS. I understand all the difficulties that such a move possess(money, stadium, conference etc.) . I trust that at such a time that a move is feasible the powers that be will make it happen. That being said I’ve often wondered about the argument against a move that says the F-M/ND market can’t support it. NDSU as a university is larger than The University of Wyoming. The F-M metro is 7 times the size of Laramie. The F-M metro area is more than a third of the size of the entire state of Wyoming. How/why can this little bitty city/state/market support FBS and the F-M market cannot? To be totally honest this is one of things that really rubs me raw about Bohl’s move to Wyoming. His move “up” is in actuality to a city/state/market that by all standards should be a step “down”.

  20. I watched some of the Goofers bowl game at a Fargo Sports Bar until the bar tender changed channels at the request of patrons. The stands looked like they didn’t have enough spectators to pay the transportation of both teams. Had to read next days paper to find out they found another way to lose. And some arm chair qb’s think we should move up to that.

  21. The Big XII is realistic. This current Bison team would have easily been middle of the pack. With 22 more scholarships, we are contenders. How do you people not see that?

    • Pete, I agree with you that with the 22 added scholarships the Bison could SOMEDAY compete in the Big 12. But first we have to be invited to the Big 12. We would have the higher expense of 22 more scholarships(which I think the team makers could come up with) and travel would go up for all of our sports teams. The biggest hurdle of joining the Big 12 is the need for at least a 40,000 seat Dome and that is going to run somewhere around $400 million. If you can find someone to come up with that money I think Gene Taylor would be happy to listen. Go Bison!

        • A 50,000 seat stadium is a minimum for the Big 12. Then the budget for athletics….. Texas $133 million per YEAR, Oklahoma $94 million/year. Come up with the money for those two things and then the need to bring the entire campus up to Big 12 standards. Other than these things, what could hold us back from joining the Big 12. So either you can pony up the money for these things or drop this silly discussion.

  22. Really? Who is going to pay for this fbs move and stadium expansion? Care to cut a 30 million check because that would get things going.

  23. Hamm, Sanford and Scheel are the names that would have to want the Bison to make the FBS move for it to happen. Go Bison!

    • “Sanford and Scheel”?

      Didn’t NDSU just have to dig into its own pockets (Development Foundation money, given for the purpose of academic scholarships) to complete the BSA project?

      And this came after “Sanford and Scheel” already dropped all the $$ they could/would put into the project?

      Go to the highest building in Fargo, and look west. There ain’t enough people here to support a stadium or a budget that would fit in the piss-ant Mountain West, much less the Big 12. Wake up, people.

  24. The other thing that’s incredibly funny about FBS move backers…..there’s always the “We’d have been just as good as any FBS school this year.”

    Pick up the key words.


    This was a once in a lifetime type of team. NDSU has a great history and tradition and will still have plenty of good seasons, but to act like this is going to be the norm year after year is a bit exaggerated, especially with the majority of the coaching staff leaving for Wyoming. It was only 4 years ago this program finished with 3 wins and there was talk of FIRING Craig Bohl.

    Unless you roll in money ala Alabama, Texas, etc you are always one bad recruiting class or one mistaken head coaching hire from falling completely back. So much of the FBS argument isn’t based on reality anyway. We’re not attractive to a major conference and never will be because of our location. The money to move up and expand the FargoDome is too absurd to justify moving to a smalltime FBS league that’ll probably not even be a part of the major FBS down the road.

    But the main reason people want to move up, because we’re so good now, just doesn’t hold water. Who knows what the program will look like next year, two years, three years, etc. To think major conferences want NDSU just because they had a great football run this year and the last two is looney

    • Did we not beat FBS teams previous to the last couple of years? Have we not earned 12 going on 13 national championships at several levels? I think its just you thinking we have only been good for the last few years. Would a major conference look at a two year good team, (NO). Would they look at a program with history of winning championships, that has a huge fan following, that would expand there market into a tri-state area, (YES). Stop short selling our state. Would it be hard, yes, would it require a enormous undertaking, including fundraising, etc, yes.

      • Dude, I’m not selling this state short. There’s just nothing to sell. Conferences don’t make moves based on how good the football program is. Fargo is too small a media market and in a terrible location. NDSU could win every FCS title from here to oblivion. Doesn’t matter. No major conference worth moving to is going to want the 120th TV market in the country and the farthest north destination in the country that’s currently -20.

        And oh by the way, have ya ever stopped to think that the world doesn’t revolve around Bison football? What about our other programs? Yes the BSA renovation will be nice, but good luck selling programs to bus or fly north to Fargo North Dakota when we bring nothing to the TV market money.

        • Reality: Nothing to sell! I hope for your sake that you are not in sales, otherwise you best find another profession. Yes this is just about football. The other programs already compete at a higher level with big name programs, and have had much success. Or don’t you remember the boys making it into the dance to be beaten by Kansas, the #1 ranked team. Saul will probably have the boys there again this year. Regardless, back on subject (Football). If its not about a winning program and the history of a program that draws fans, what might I ask was ESPN’s motivation for doing Game Day here and playing the Furman game on ESPN. Nothing to sell according to you soooo does ESPN just like showing non saleable teams or what. Fact is there are bison fans all over the country. Everyone likes to watch a strong program aka team play, regardless of there location. Don’t you believe that say Notre Dame has more fans watching there games that don’t live in the immediate area of the school. I for one, believe the Bison Football program would be an easy sale, and with the proper promotion would become a nationally known brand.
          Now as to our location – I hate to mention this on this board but you have deemed it necessary. How do our friends to the north compete in the highest level of hockey manage to get teams to fly in to play when it so cold up here. I mean, its North Dakota, so I’m sure no one wants to watch them on TV, especially when there playing Wisconsin or MN. You say ya but its MN that people are watching, ha ha, no people want to watch teams with History of winning and outstanding programs regardless of there location.

          • Again-the cold hard truth about conference expansion at the major level is it has NOTHING TO DO WITH THE COMPETITIVE LEVEL OF THE FOOTBALL PROGRAM, especially in a short window of time. If it did, do you really think Colorado would be in the Pac-12?

            The Gameday thing is apples and oranges. They came to Fargo in a week where there were no marquee matchups and gave the FCS love. They’d done it on a few occasions before. But it’s not a sign that we’re suddenly appealing to major TV networks. Even the ESPN games in the playoffs are far from special. They’ve televised games from the FCS playoffs forever, typically from the sites that draw the most fans (hence the reason Montana used to be a regular).

            By the way Kansas was not ranked Number One and SDSU has had more berths in the NCAA Tournament than us. Bison Football is the number one thing the school has going for it, and it’s been a while since hoops has really been relevant. This year’s group has a great chance to get back but don’t count your chickens before they hatch, especially if they run into SDSU in Sioux Falls with 6,000 Jacks fans to 500 NDSU fans. This team doesn’t handle hostile environments well (See SDSU last year and ESPECIALLY UND this year).

            Again, success on the field/court/whatever has nothing to do with it. Conference realignment is all about location, location, location. Unless we can pick up and move south we’re too far north and too small. We don’t bring enough of a TV market to appeal to a (formerly) BCS conference. Comparing us to Notre Dame is insane. Yes NDSU has a great following but Notre Dame is 10,000 times the national brand that NDSU has been, as is Texas, Oklahoma, etc. And I’m pretty sure there are plenty of other schools with bigger alumni bases in bigger markets that have better arguments to join a BCS conference than a school from one of the smallest populated states in the country. And please, don’t try to say we could count the Minneapolis market. I know there’s plenty of Bison alums but it’s not nearly enough to justify that especially when they have all the pro teams and their own Big Ten program.

            The only thing crazier than comparing NDSU football to Notre Dame is making the hockey comparison. It’s a smaller NCAA sport with fewer teams competing (they abolished D2 hockey long ago). Even still, look at how quickly the major programs bolted when the Big Ten formed a hockey conference (MORE MONEY!).

            NDSU has a great football program, but it’s never going to be on a par with Texas, Oklahoma, or in a major conference. No fault of it’s own though, but there are some ceilings you just can’t reach, and they play with more money than NDSU could ever logically see. That said, there’s absolutely NOTHING wrong with that. The tradition and experience now are fantastic and not to be taken for granted. Giving up what they have now in the FCS to make some ill fated move to a dinky FBS conference that will leave them playing for the Pizza Bowl year after year after year doesn’t strike me as being any more “big time” than where we are now.

  25. Why do I waste my time reading and showing interest in this blog when my comments get held back. I think Kolpack and Izzo are great to hear from and love their insight. Some of the comments on here are much more ridiculous than mine. Is Lakes the moderator?

    Go Bison!!

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