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Herd’s Hunches

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Another school year means another year of Bison football

 

As the summer days dwindle down, college students are faced with the realization that another year of school is right around the corner. Another strenuous year of readings, the always-awkward group presentations, quizzes and exams as the temperature outside lowers as painfully as Miley Cyrus’ reputation.

 

Yes, it is a tough thought for any student, but at NDSU, one does not have to look far for some optimism. Because as the yawn-fest that is syllabus week draws nearer, so too does the always-exciting tradition of Bison Gameday.

Students at NDSU are spoiled with entertainment every fall Saturday when the Bison football team hits the field. Very few colleges can ever say they have the chance to watch the two-time defending national champions in action. In fact, Alabama is the only school outside of NDSU that can say that this year. And in that right, the buzz around campus is always about the upcoming football game.

See, college is a tough gig if you have nothing to look forward to on the weekends. With schoolwork piling up, the weekdays threaten to go slower than seating at Buffalo Wild Wings on student night. But with the Best Show on FCS Turf reigning at the FargoDome the last two years, NDSU students don’t have to worry about that. And with 19 of 22 starters returning, the show is looking to continue for a third straight year.

While there may be a list of reasons to dread the start of school, Bison football gives NDSU students something big to look forward to. Trading in a weekend on the pontoon for free admission into the FargoDome that would make any aspiring season-ticket holder jealous is a hard complaint.

The free tickets make the gameday experience that much sweeter for students. That is until the server crashes during homecoming week, which caused a bigger panic than a Blackboard shutdown ever will. Nonetheless, a slim amount of college students get the opportunity to have a gameday experience like the one that drapes North Fargo in gold every Saturday. It is what the students on campus reminisce about every week before they begin looking forward to the next gameday.

I’ve experienced Bison Gameday from two very different perspectives so far during my two years at NDSU. I was a part of that wild student section my freshman year, in which I almost committed the deadly sin of wearing a shirt other than gold for the first couple games. Then last year, I had to suppress the cheering as I sat in the press box as the sports editor for the school paper, The Spectrum.

Even though the role of my attendance had changed, that didn’t stop the excitement of Bison Gameday. Every single game is an experience of its own that makes attending NDSU a special thing. And with the upcoming season being the most anticipated in school history, everyone in attendance is in for a treat.

We all know the storylines: every member of the defense coming back with starting experience, Brock Jensen’s final year, the two 1,000 yard rushers in Sam Ojuri and John Crockett, and Craig Bohl at the helm of it all with his new contract.

Bohl said the 2010 recruiting class had the opportunity to bring a national championship home to Fargo. They have already contributed in bringing in two. Senior students probably remember watching some of this year’s senior football players on the field during their true freshman years, making this season so special. It’s the end of a magical run for the 25 seniors on the roster.

While they are all chomping at the bit to begin the season in their quest for a three-peat, the students should be equally as excited. Because even though the days of summer are counting down, so too are the days until The March Is On.

Preseason Predictions:

Offensive MVP: Brock Jensen

Defensive MVP: Grant Olson

Rookie of the Year: Pierre Gee-Tucker

Offensive Breakout Player: Carey Woods

Defensive Breakout Player: CJ Smith

Kansas State Prediction: 30-20, Kansas State

Sam Herder is a student at NDSU and is the Sports Editor at The Spectrum.

Herd’s Hunches
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