Beginning Of The Sky Schedule

The non-conference part of the schedule is over and the UND football is set to embark on their first journey through a full conference schedule since the 2007 season when they were still in the NCC.

UND made it through the non-conference portion of the season with a 2-1 record, which was to be expected.  The SD Mines game was a gimme and the Portland State game was supposed to be an even game and played out like it.  UND was a heavy underdog out at San Diego State and ended up losing that game by 8 points.  So 2-1 is about what most UND fans expected at this point.  Now what?

There are eight conference games left and the program could essentially treat this like a new season.  They control their own destiny, as a 6-2 record gets them in the playoffs but 5-3 would most likely leave them out due to the scheduling of SD Mines.  The four home games are Cal-Poly, Montana, Northern Arizona, and Southern Utah.  All have to be considered must-wins but are going to be extremely hard games.  Cal-Poly just beat Wyoming and Montana is Montana.  Oh, and Northern Arizona just beat UNLV.  A plus for the fans is its probably the best home slate of games in the history of the UND program.

The biggest game of the season is coming up on Saturday out at Sacramento State.  This is a must-win game for UND.  Sac State is sitting at 2-1 on the year, with one of those wins being against Pac-12 member Colorado and the other being against Northern Colorado of the Big Sky (non-conference game).  They also beat Pac-12 school Oregon State in Corvallis, OR in 2011.  Those 2 wins show the type of talent that Sac St. has in their program.  If UND wants to give itself a shot at the playoffs they need to beat Sacramento State.  Without this win they would need an upset at Montana State or Eastern Washington – not easy.  One other thing to consider:  this will be back-to-back trips to California for UND.  Both over three hour flights.  Will it take a toll on them mentally or physically?

UND is 1-5 in in the state of California since 2008:

  • 2008 – loss at UC-Davis 34-21
  • 2009 – loss at UC-Davis 28-20
  • 2010 – loss at Cal-Poly 22-21
  • 2011 – loss at Fresno St. 27-22, win at UC-Davis 14-7
  • 2012 – loss at San Diego St. 49-41

UND needs to start getting used to winning in California – they will be there a lot in the future.  What better time to start than now.


11 Responses

  1. Teeder11

    I just can get used to reading other message boards and out-of-state media stories that refer to our offense as “explosive” and our defense as “porous.” What in the heck happened to us!? It’s like I went through a time warp or something and landed in some flipped-on-its head parallel universe.

    1. Amazing isn’t it?

      We thought and hoped that with an improved secondary the defense would be the stabilizing force to the team and that the offense would do what they needed to in order to win games.

      The offense has turned out to be the most exciting we have ever seen…..ever. UND has leaned on its offense early.

      The QB position, which we figured would be the biggest question mark, is now a HUGE strength. Hanson goes down and “would have been” 3rd string QB Marcus Hendrickson explodes onto the scene to put up numbers rarely seen.

      The defense has been suspect so far to say the least, but in their defense, the have played 2 high-octane offenses in Portland and San Diego State. We feel they will get better in Big Sky play and that the secondary play and tackling will improve – it has to.

      There will be games where the offense struggles and the defense will be called upon to bail them out. It will happen.

      Is this why the cliche “that’s why they play the games” is so often used? Maybe? 🙂

      Unbelievably exciting Big Sky Football is still yet to come. We have our seatbelts buckled and are anxiously awaiting to see how this all unfolds.

      By the way, with Hanson not at 100%, the coaches have made the right choice to go with Hendrickson. Makes too much sense. But when Hanson is healthy and ready to go, well…

      Thanks for the comments!

  2. geaux_sioux

    What I never got is how Joey Bradley was given ad many chances as he was. With all due to him respect he was garbage. Goska who was not a good passer and blew Bradley away last year. I thought they should’ve unleashed Marcus last year but that obviously didn’t happen for various reasons. I’m just happy Marcus has gotten a fair chance but why it took so long is a mystery. The fact that he was 3rd string going into fall camp was a joke.

      1. Bradley was #2 on the depth chart and Marcus was #3. Bradley, for some obscene reason, thought he should be #1 – so he quit. Probably the best thing that could have happened for Marcus and the UND program.

        We don’t beat Portland State with Joey Bradley at QB.

  3. firg voss reporting

    they say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result??? time for new guys to play on defense and maybe the result will be a little different?

    myles jablonski
    will lewis
    clordion kennedy
    javen butler
    derrick goard
    spencer cummings
    a second brown to complement daryl brown at the other corner

    these guys need to play

  4. Rotating the front 7 has always been a staple of UND defenses for the last 15 years at least. In the secondary, not so much.

    I sometimes have my questions about rotating in the secondary, especially at corner.

    Firg, all of those guys you mention have played and will play more as they get more comfortable with the defense and executing their assignments. The coaches have a good feel on that.

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