Photo by Paul Flessland
1. Bison Basketball Tickets
Receiving tickets to a sports event is an electrifying feeling.
In 2011, my dad bought the two of us Vikings tickets for Christmas. Coincidentally, it wasn’t because I was dying to see the Vikings, but because Tim Tebow and the Denver Broncos were in town. Growing up a Florida Gators fan, I had followed Tebow since his freshman year when I thought the TV commentators were calling him “T-Bone” in reference to his nickname (at least I thought it was his nickname). I was as diehard of a Tebow fan as you could get. He would lead the Broncos to a win that afternoon in Minneapolis, finishing the game 10-of-15 for 202 yards with two touchdowns through the air – his best performance of the season to that point. It was an unforgettable experience.
This holiday season, at least one bullet of your shopping list should involve three words.
Bison. Basketball. Tickets.
Whether you’re buying tickets for your significant other, sibling or children, you can’t go wrong spending some of that holiday budget money for an entertaining few hours at the SHAC. Whether it’s men’s or women’s hoops, the Bison have many new — and talented — players on the roster.
For the couples out there looking for a fun date night, wouldn’t you rather see Deng Geu poster an opposing big and witness Vinnie Shahid pull up from 25 feet without hesitation than open Hulu and immerse yourselves in The Bachelor? I mean, Colton (Underwood) is probably going to be a mess to watch anyway. Or, at least that’s what I’ve heard because I definitely don’t watch The Bachelor.
Editor’s Note: He does watch The Bachelor
Come to the SHAC, enjoy the world-class facility and, most importantly, take a note from North Dakota State men’s basketball’s marketing campaign: Embrace the Journey.
2. Anything with the Bison logo on it
There are plenty of shopping locations in North Dakota to fulfill this Christmas desire. SCHEELS has pretty much every Bison item you can think of. So does Dick’s Sporting Goods. As does the mall…
There is no shortage of places to buy things featuring the Bison logo, and everything is cooler with your favorite team’s logo on it. Scraping the ice off your windshield in -10-degree weather? Not fun. Scraping the ice off your windshield in -10-degree weather with a Bison-licensed ice scraper? Now that’s a whole different story.
Need a new mug to pair with your Michael Scott-themed “World’s Best Boss” mug? Go treat yourself with a new Bison mug, or, if you are really looking to spice things up, customize one with Chris Klieman’s face plastered on the front. That wouldn’t raise eyebrows at all!
3. For fans to stop calling Bison football overrated
Some people think the Bison football team is overrated in the landscape of college football due to their FCS status Don’t listen to those people. They aren’t worth your time.
You know how hard it is to dominate a 125-team league over the entirety of the current decade? Not even Jesus Christ did that, although bringing a man back to life is undoubtedly a significant achievement as well.
Sure, we may get a little carried away at times by creating posters such as “bring on Bama”, but I find those mostly hyperbole and harmless. There are no professional sports teams here in town, so in many ways, NDSU gets the treatment of one. Also, by now, everyone should realize the top of the FCS is much stronger than the bottom of the FBS.
There are so many reasons North Dakota State should not be able to win six games in a row against Football Bowl Subdivision competition, a stretch that began on the opening weekend of the 2010 season with a 6-3 win against Kansas. They aren’t allowed as many scholarships as FBS teams. They don’t have a budget as big as FBS teams. They don’t have the recruiting cachet like FBS teams. Even as the best team in the FCS, they shouldn’t be able to dominate the big boys.
And yet they consistently do.
They’re the North Dakota State Bison, and they are unstoppable.
4. Another reason to go to Frisco
This year, the bracket creators placed James Madison AND South Dakota State on the same side of the bracket as NDSU. This created the possibility of an NDSU vs. JMU quarterfinal match-up and NDSU vs. SDSU semifinal match-up. However, the road to Frisco still went through Fargo, and no one in the FCS had a home-field advantage like the Bison.
NDSU is 70-6 at home since 2010, have won 62 of the last 64 home games over non-conference opponents, hold a 22-4 record at home all-time against FCS Top 10 teams, are 21-1 at home in the FCS playoffs, and drew 18,000-plus to 54 straight home contests from the 2011 quarterfinals through the 2017 second round.
It was not easy getting through our Scandinavian city victorious, which is great news for anyone looking to get some Texas sun in a post-Christmas vacation.
5. A National Championship
After a one-year title game hiatus in 2016, North Dakota State returned to glory last year with its unprecedented sixth FCS championship in the last seven years, defeating reigning champ James Madison 17-13 in Frisco, Texas.
I’d be more than okay if the Bison getting another championship was my only Christmas present. Being a senior myself, watching 24 fellow seniors cap off brilliant careers with an undefeated season and surpassing Georgia Southern for the most titles (seven) in FCS history might draw a few tears.
But as you might remember from above, I watch The Bachelor, so would tearing up really be a surprise?
Now, stop judging me, go to GoBison.com, and start your Bison Christmas shopping.
I’m Dan Slaubaugh and this is your Slaubaugh Scoop.
Thanks for reading. Have a wonderful December. Go Bison.