FARGO, N.D. - The North Dakota State Bison will be on the field on a Friday for the first time this season. Usually their games are on Saturday’s, but when you’re in the FCS Semi-Finals, you can’t really complain. They host Sam Houston State tomorrow night.
While it’s one less day to heal up and prepare for their playoff game, it’s not so much of a big deal for them, because the Bison have home field advantage. "It helps us being at home,” said Chris Klieman, North Dakota State Head Football Coach. “You know, that's a major thing. We're at home, so it's one less day for our guys from a recovery stand-point, we'll have all of our game-plan and stuff in. We usually get all that in by Thursday, so if we get it in by Thursday we're set to go. From a recovery stand-point, you always worry about it, but, we've been fortunate defensively, we haven't played that many plays the last two weeks. And then on offense, we've been able to get guys out in the 4th quarter."
One of the guys on offense that has been able to be a key player for this team is senior offensive lineman Austin Kuhnert. He was selected as the top offensive lineman in the Division I Football Championship Subdivision as one of the 11 student-athletes named to the FCS Athletic Directors Association All-America Team. So, you can say he’s kind of a big deal for the Bison.
"He's really important because he's a senior that's played a ton of football for us, and he's one of the few that played against those guys in 2014, and they have one of the best defensive lineman in all of FCS. He'll play inside and he'll play outside, but it gives us a decent match-up when he does play inside that we have Austin in there, an experienced guy that's a really physical player that understands playoff football," said Klieman.
The Bison will continue their playoff run tomorrow night as they take the field for a 7:00 p.m. CT semi-final game in the Fargodome against Sam Houston State. This game will be on ESPN2, but you can catch the hour-long Bison Pre-Game Show starting at 6:00 p.m. CT on West Dakota Fox.