North Dakota State’s ‘upset’ over Iowa is business as usual for the Bison

Cam Pederson, Cole Davis
North Dakota State kicker Cam Pedersen (36) reacts with holder Cole Davis (7) after kicking a 37-yard field goal on the final play to beat Iowa in September, something Michigan could not do in November.
(Charlie Neibergall / Associated Press)

You can call North Dakota State’s 23-21 win over No. 13 Iowa on Saturday an upset. Bison fans might call it business as usual.

North Dakota State, a Football Championship Subdivision (used to be Division I-AA) power, has won six consecutive games against top-level opponents since 2010.

Oh, and thanks, Iowa, for that $500,000 the Bison got just for showing up for the game at Iowa City.

North Dakota State has won five consecutive FCS titles and is top ranked again this season, though there was plenty of reason to believe its streak against upper-division teams was in jeopardy against Iowa.


The Bison’s last five wins over Football Bowl Subdivision teams weren’t exactly powerhouses; those opponents finished with combined records of 20-41.

Plus, North Dakota State’s first two wins this season came in overtime, against Charleston Southern and Eastern Washington.

The Cardiac Kids theme held true again versus Iowa. The Bison won on a 37-yard field goal by Cam Pedersen as time expired.

North Dakota State, the program that produced No. 2 NFL draft pick Carson Wentz, beat Iowa at its own smash-mouth game, rushing for 239 yards and holding the Hawkeyes to 34 yards in 25 carries.


In the meantime, quarterback Easton Stick, who guided the Bison to eight wins last season when Wentz was injured, ran his college career record to 11-0 by completing 11 of 19 passes for 124 yards and a touchdown and running for 35 yards.

Looking like a champ

If Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson seemed to float like a butterfly and Cardinals defenders stung like bees in their 63-20 rout of No. 2 Florida State, well, it was only appropriate.

Louisville honored native son Muhammad Ali during the game.

The red helmets of Cardinals players bore a white butterfly decal with “Ali” printed inside it. The same butterfly design — this one covering about 30 square feet — adorned an area beyond one end zone.

Ali rose to fame as a teenage boxer in Louisville before winning the gold medal as a light-heavyweight fighter in the 1960 Rome Olympics. He died June 3 at 74.

As for Jackson, in three games he has rushed for 464 yards and 10 touchdowns and passed for 913 yards and eight touchdowns as the Cardinals have scored 195 points.

MOB mentality


Rice was pounded by Baylor, 38-10, in a Friday night game, but the Owls’ band — a.k.a. “The MOB” (Marching Owl Band) — got plenty of shots in during halftime.

The band formed “Title IX” in front of the Baylor fan section, an obvious reference to the multiple Title IX lawsuits that have been filed against the university in sexual assault cases.

It also formed a star and played “Hit the Road Jack” — an ode to former Baylor president Kenneth Starr, who was removed from his post after an investigation into the university’s actions relating to assault allegations.

On Saturday, Rice issued a statement expressing “regret” and saying the band’s efforts at satire may have gone “too far.”


Tennessee’s 28-19 win over Ohio was the Volunteers’ ninth consecutive victory, its longest winning streak since 1998-99. … Tennessee’s next game is against No. 23 Florida, which has 11 straight wins over the Volunteers. … Kansas, after a 43-7 loss to Memphis, has dropped 39 consecutive road games. … Mike Norvell is the first Memphis football coach to win his first two games.


Twitter: @MikeHiserman

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