No. 8 North Dakota (1-0) at Utah State (1-0)
Logan, Utah (Merlin Olson Field at Maverik Stadium)
Sept. 10, 8 p.m. Central
TV: CBS Sports Network
Radio: The Fox 96.1 FM (Grand Forks); The Home of Economy Radio Network
Pregame radio show begins at 7 p.m. Central
GRAND FORKS, N.D. – Following a 21-point victory at Idaho State, No. 8 ranked North Dakota will play its first FBS foe since 2018 when it heads to Utah State for a Friday night showdown on CBS Sports Network. The Fighting Hawks and Aggies will kickoff at 8 p.m. Central at Merlin Olson Field at Maverik Stadium.
The Fighting Hawks defense shined against the Bengals, intercepting three passes to create 17 points off turnovers. North Dakota also made a goal-line stand, stopping ISU four times at the one-yard line to set up another score. Hayden Galvin’s interception on the first drive of the game set the tone for the Fighting Hawks defense, who recorded its next two picks in the second half en route to outscoring ISU 25-7 In the final 30.
UND’s 17 points off turnovers were the fifth-most scored by an FCS program this week. However, the Hawks were one of only three teams (JMU, NDSU) to convert turnovers into points in all attempts. Villanova scored 27 points off turnovers to lead the nation in that category.
Despite the sudden changes and the short field to work with, running back Otis Weah still managed to accrue 100 yards while reaching the end zone three times to become the first UND back to record the feat since 2018. His three touchdowns were the second most by an FCS running back last weekend, trailing only Murray State’s Preston Rice, who scored four against Mississippi Valley State.
Along with the defensive exploits, senior Matt Waletzko was named the Missouri Valley Football Conference’s Offensive Lineman of the Week. The UND offense totaled 368 yards and recorded 17 first downs in 63 plays. Quarterback Tommy Schuster went untouched in the backfield and posted a 181.5 quarterback rating.
Utah State also played with an electric style, completing a fourth-quarter comeback at Washington State, 26-23. The Aggies offense, who at one point ran three plays in 25 seconds against Wazzu, registered 441 yards of offense, including over 200 yards on the ground.
The University of North Dakota will open its home season on Saturday, Sept. 18 when it hosts Drake in the Potato Bowl at the Alerus Center. Kickoff will be at 4 p.m.