Feature photo by J. Alan Paul Photography
After ending the season with a loss for the first time since 2010, the 2017 North Dakota State football team was on a mission to reclaim its throne atop the FCS. With a dominating start in the nonconference schedule to the grind of the Missouri Valley Football Conference gauntlet to another home stretch in the playoffs, the Bison provided a trip back to Frisco, Texas, that the players, coaches and fans will never forget.
North Dakota State quarterback Easton Stick tells us all about his reaction from another trip back to Frisco.
Stats: 164-264 passing, 2,466 yards, 28 TDs, 8 INT, 112 rushes, 663 yards, 12 TDs
How were you able to respond after that South Dakota State loss?
“Just going back to work and understanding you aren’t always going to be perfect. I went back to work Monday and took it one day at a time. There’s a process around here. You can’t win games just on Saturday and you can’t press during the week and try to win it Monday and Tuesday. We knew we’d be OK.”
How was the build-up different this year leading up to Frisco knowing you’d be the starter?
“It was exciting just knowing that when the ball is kicked off, I’d be the one going out there. A couple years ago, I prepared and was ready to play. Carson (Wentz) stayed healthy so I didn’t have to go out there. But it was exciting leading up to it knowing I’d have an opportunity to play and lead the team.”
What do you tell your offense when things aren’t going your way in the second half?
“Just continue to stay at it and understand the next play could be the play. Just keep pushing and keep communicating. We struggled a little bit and that was a really good defense. We did enough and got enough first downs to put ourselves in a position to win.”
What was going through your mind as you ran backward on that last play?
“First, it was catch the snap. After that, I wanted to make sure I got away from the line. As soon as I turned around, I found the clock and once it hit triples zeros I was getting down. From there, it was having fun and celebrating.”
Is there any sense of validation now that YOU are a starting quarterback at NDSU who won a national championship game?
“I haven’t thought of it that way. There’s a lot of high expectations in this program and community. It was really the same it’s been every year. You go to work every day and put yourself in a position to win on Saturdays. It feels good to be back on top. The biggest thing is the seniors went out the right away.”
“It was a cool experience. Having (Carson Wentz’s Philadelphia teammates here) and seeing how he led those guys and interacted and essentially managing a lot of different personalities. Guys that are in different stages of their careers and stuff like that. It was cool to see the leadership angle he took on it and seeing how those guys work.” – Easton Stick, “Relationships, Culture Keeps Davis At NDSU To Continue Grooming Stick“
SUBSCRIBE TO BISON ILLUSTRATED
Get 12 issues delivered to your door for only $29.99. Stay up to date with the latest in Bison Athletics with a Bison Illustrated subscription! This monthly magazine showcases the latest news in NDSU Sports with exclusive interviews, original game photos, and insightful writing. Subscribe today!