No. 22 UND prepares for road battle at No. 4 SIUGRAND FORKS, N.D. – No. 22 North Dakota hits the road for the second straight week and will battle a top-5 program for the second time over its last three games with a showdown against No. 4 Southern Illinois at 2 p.m. from Carbondale, Ill.
Fans can watch the action on ESPN3 as part of the Missouri Valley Football Conference Game of the Week or tune into the Home of Economy Radio Network with Jack Michaels, Tom Dosch and Paul Ralston.
In the program’s first game as a member of the MVFC, North Dakota opened the eyes of the entire league with a 44-21 trouncing over then-No. 24 Southern Illinois to begin the Spring 2020-21 campaign.
In that contest, UND struck for 21 points in the third quarter and exploded for 229 yards on the ground to begin the march to a conference championship, becoming the first team in league history to win the crown in their first year as a member.
The UND defense also made quite the statement, holding the Salukis to just 90 yards rushing and is still the only team to hold SIU to under 100 yards in the last 28 games. The Hawks also scored a defensive touchdown and forced five turnovers.
The last few weeks have not been kind to North Dakota, dropping to 0-2 in league play with losses to North Dakota State and South Dakota. This marks only the third time under Head Coach Bubba Schweigert that UND has started the conference slate with an 0-2 mark (2014, 2017); however, neither of those teams started 0-3.
In fact, the last time a UND team has started the conference season with an 0-3 mark was 2010, when the Fighting Sioux went 0-4 in the 5-team Great West Conference. Before that? You’d have to go all the way back to 1986, when UND went 2-7 in the NCC.