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CSN West

Northern Iowa @ North Dakota State, Oct. 29, 2011

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FARGO, ND--I am in the Fargodome for today's game between two of the top three ranked teams in the polls. NDSU is ranked #2 in the latest Gridiron Index Poll (GPI) and Northern Iowa is ranked #3. Georgia Southern is ranked #1 currently but also has a big game this week against Appalachian State, the #6 ranked team in the GPI.

This game should be a defensive struggle if we go by the statistics so far. NDSU is the top ranked scoring defense and UNI is #2.

The two offenses have been productive when needed as well. The battle of quarterbacks is between the Panthers Tirrell Rennie, who has set a UNI record for consecutive pass attempts without an interception with 146. NDSU's Brock Jensen has thrown just one in his 149 attempts.

The top running backs are D.J. McNorton for NDSU and David Johnson for UNI with two good backups in Sam Ojuri and Carlos Anderson respectively.

The two lines I would say are equal both on the offensive and defensive sides.

On paper, these two teams couldn't be more evenly matched as seen with the statistics above.

I think the game will be decided by who gains more turnovers. Statistically, both are close in this category. UNI is a +13 and NDSU is a +11.

A other area might be who performs better on the special teams.

The home field for the Bison I think will also play a role. Standing room tickets are the only tickets open as of yesterday and believe most of those should be picked up. A crowd over 19,000 is expected and could rival the all-time attendance record today.

With that, I think the home field noise will cause some concerns for UNI and may result in some turnovers and some unforced fouls. As I stated in my column for the week, I think NDSU will pull out a close, low scoring game.

We shall see if this comes true or if UNI can overcome likely the most adverse crowd they have seen including the one point loss it had at FBS Iowa State.

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  1. Kent's Avatar
    NDSU has won the coin toss and deferred to the second half. UNI will get the ball first.
  2. Kent's Avatar
    The coin toss is just what NDSU would like as they like to put their defense on first.
  3. Kent's Avatar
    UNI's Jerad Hering with a 57 yard kickoff return. UNI starts at the NDSU 43.
  4. Kent's Avatar
    Josh Collins catches the first pass from Rennie for a 22 yard gain down to the NDSU 21.
  5. Kent's Avatar
    Herring catches the third play for a 15 yard gain with a 1st & goal at the 4.

    The crowd comes into play on the next play with a false start.

    It is now 1st & goal at the 9.
  6. Kent's Avatar
    David Johnson gains 4 on the 1st down play and Rennie throws an incompletion on 2nd down.

    3rd & goal on the 5.
  7. Kent's Avatar
    UNI has to take a timeout before the 3rd down play.

    The 3rd down pass is incomplete.

    Tyler Sieverson is on to attempt a 22 yard field goal and he makes it.

    UNI 3 NDSU 0 with 12:21.
  8. Kent's Avatar
    McNorton returns the UNI kickoff back to the NDSU 29.
  9. Kent's Avatar
    McNorton gains 5 on the first play on a run.
  10. Kent's Avatar
    NDSU is driving down to the UNI 40. So much for my prediction of a defensive struggle so far.
  11. Kent's Avatar
    FS Tre'Darrius Canady is injured for the Panthers. It appears to be a leg.
  12. Kent's Avatar
    NDSU is no faced with a 3rd and 2 at the UNI 32.

    McNorton gets the ball carry and gets two for a 1st down.
  13. Kent's Avatar
    NDSU has another 3rd & 2 and now have a 1st and goal at the six.
  14. Kent's Avatar
    NDSU scores from six yards out by McNorton. NDSU 7 UNI 3 with 6:02 left in the 1st qtr.

    UNI drives to the NDSU 42 but is forced to punt after that.

    NDSU ball with 2:06 left in the opening qtr.
  15. Kent's Avatar
    NDSU gets a first down after a run by Sam Ojuri after a recepton by McNorton--currently at the 31 after a short pass to the fullback Andrew Grothmann is tackle and an no gain by a pass catch by Ryan Smith.

    That is the end of the 1st qtr. NDSU will have a 3rd & 11 when we start the 2nd qtr.
  16. Kent's Avatar
    Warren Halloway catches a 14 yard pass to keep this drive alive for NDSU up to their own 45.
  17. Kent's Avatar
    Another Halloway catch has NDSU down to the UNI 41 with a gain of 11.
  18. Kent's Avatar
    Two carries--one by Ojuri and one by McNorton has the Bison down to the UNI 30.
  19. Kent's Avatar
    NDSU goes backwards after getting down the UNI 16. The Bison have a 3rd & 26 from the 32.

    Matt Veldemann gains 12 to set up an easier FG attmpt of 32 yards by Ryan Jastram. He makes it.

    NDSU 10 UNI 3 with 7:50 left in the opening half.
  20. Kent's Avatar
    UNI returns the kickoff just to their own 19.
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