Bison Illustrated November 2019

Page 1

N OV E M B E R 2 0 1 9




The science behind North Dakota State’s success





Whether you are a Bison fan or not, very few recognize the details that go into the North Dakota State athletic competitions we enjoy watching. One of those details is science and the various branches of that vague term. From a sheer scientific perspective, there are a host of physical and mental ingredients that need to occur over the course of a play, game or sequence to achieve athletic success. What are these ingredients? And how do they create a recipe for success at North Dakota State? We take a deep dive inside the world of sports science to answer those questions. 20 24 28 32 34 36







Playing the vital position of fullback, senior Garrett Malstrom and redshirt freshman Hunter Luepke are key performers in the Bison offense.




8 Editor’s Note 61 How Well Do You Know Your Teammate 66 Bison Shots 70 Pop Quiz 72 Athletics Calendar

Junior hitters Alexis Bachmeier and Emily Halverson have emerged as stars for NDSU volleyball.

74 The Ross Report


78 Swany Says

76 Slaubaugh’s Scoop

We bring back our Game Faces feature with the Bison soccer team giving us their best in-game reactions.

Football Men's And Women's Basketball Wrestling Golf Volleyball Soccer






why this all matters



I did not grow up a huge fan of North Dakota State athletics. As a kid, I was more enamored with the results of the Indianapolis Colts and Minnesota Timberwolves. To be truthful, the only Bison team I ever paid attention to in my formative years was the men's basketball team that made it to the NCAA Tournament in 2008-09. I had little to no knowledge of North Dakota State's football program, it's tradition and history. However, my father, being an NDSU alum was glued to the television each Saturday to watch the Bison. Me? Not so much. So when he took me to my first Bison game on November 12, 2011 (12 days before I turned 18) against Youngstown State, I was less than impressed. We made the drive from Bismarck that



Saturday morning, only to watch the Penguins beat the Bison 27-24. At the time, it snapped an eight-game home win streak for NDSU. It was also NDSU's lone loss in what was eventually a national title season. I left that game wondering what the hell was so great about the Bison? I mean, they lost, to a team who is nicknamed the Penguins? To my uneducated sports mind (at the time), that was laughable. It also made me question why my dad was obsessed with Bison football. Some three years later, I remember watching the 2013 national title game from a hospital room in Bismarck. Admittedly, it was the first national championship game I watched at that point. My dad was laying in the hospital bed that day, unable to talk or cheer, he was just


watching. He had been in that bed since New Year’s Day and had been sleeping in hospital beds for the past few months (outside of a short stint at home). North Dakota State beat Towson 35-7 in that game to win their third consecutive national title. Oddly enough, that 15-0 Bison team was perhaps the greatest in school history. Again, it was cool that North Dakota was on the map on the national stage, but I still didn't understand the magnitude of it or how impressive three straight titles were. Three days later, my dad passed away. I always like to think the Bison won that January 4 game for him. I reflect on those two moments often. Especially since I get to cover these programs and studentathletes each day as a career. I still do not consider myself a fan, that's not my job, but I often think there was a time where I had no idea what was going on at NDSU. Now, I understand why my dad was all eyes and ears when the Bison took the field each Saturday. I get it.

If my dad were still around today, I don't think he would be able to comprehend that I follow this team for a living. Let alone that I've been able to cover conference tournaments, national championships and the NCAA Tournament (we use to watch it all day in March). Sometimes, I cannot comprehend it either. Every Saturday, I look up at the Fargodome lights during a game from the press box and lose myself in memories. I recall sitting behind the endzone with my dad some eight years ago and all the joy it brought him when those lights went out and Thunderstruck played. I get choked up recalling those things, knowing that I cover something he was passionate about his whole life. I live out his dreams. All the athletes, coaches and programs I cover for this job pale in comparison to that. That is why this all matters to me...

NOVEMBER 2019 | VOLUME 13 ISSUE 12 Bison Illustrated is a free publication distributed monthly (12 times a year). Our mission is to help promote North Dakota State University Athletics, provide a quality and fun reading experience and to improve the way of life in our community. The publication is mailed to homes across the US and has newsstand distribution throughout North Dakota and Minnesota.

Publisher Mike Dragosavich


Editorial Director Andrew Jason

Editor Nolan P. Schmidt Art Director Sarah Geiger Marketing Designer Christy German Creative Director Simon Andrys Director of Photography Hillary Ehlen Videographer Patrick Thompson Contributors Josh Swanson, Dan Slaubaugh, Ross Uglem Photographer Gary Ussery Editorial Assistant Brady Drake Cody Editing/Social Media Nolan P. Schmidt ADVERTISING

Associate Sales Director Neil Keltgen Senior Sales Executives Paul Hoefer

Executive Sales Assistant Kellen Feeney

Sales Executive Zach Olson

Randy Vangrud

Client Relations Manager Jenny Johnson Office Manager Wendy Kalbrener Executive Administrative Jennifer McColm Assistant VP of Human Resources Colleen Dreyer Account Strategist Cassie Wiste Controller Jay Borland Business Development Manager Nick Schommer Digital Marketing Specialist Tommy Uhlir Inbound Marketing Specialist Kirsten Lund DISTRIBUTION

Delivery Bruce Crummy, John Stuber, Craig Sheets

FOR ADVERTISING, CALL 701-478-SPOT (7768) or email Bison Illustrated is published by Spotlight, LLC. Copyright 2019 Bison Illustrated & All rights reserved. No parts of this magazine may be reproduced or distributed without written permission of Bison Illustrated. Bison Illustrated and Spotlight, LLC is not responsible for, and expressly disclaims all liability for, damages of any kind arising out of use, reference to, or reliance on such information. Spotlight, LLC accepts no liability for the accuracy of statements made by the advertisers. Send change of address information and other correspondence to: Spotlight LLC. 15 Broadway N, Suite 500 Fargo, ND 58102 or



























Learn more about us at SPOTLIGHTMEDIAFARGO.COM



We don't have to tell you why art is important. But we will introduce you to some incredible local artists who are making waves, nearby and beyond. Whether you are filling an empty wall, setting the mood or hoping for a conversation starter, no home is complete without art. Join us as we meet some of Fargo's finest creators and get ready to be inspired to add to your own home gallery.

What is better than beer and food? In this issue, we pair the two together (literally). We teamed up with local breweries and local restaurants to pair FargoMoorhead-born beers with handcrafted Red River Valley dishes. Sophisticated palates are certainly not required as we span the entire city searching for the perfect beer and food pairings. Here is what we found.

Starting a business can be a lonely experience, however, it’s important to know that you’re not the only one going through the same challenges. That’s why in this month’s Startup Issue, Nick Horob, the founder of Harvest Profit, has been keeping a diary of the highs and lows of growing a business. Along with Nick, our mission with this issue is to help you grow and launch your company.




BISON ST U D Y Whether you are a Bison fan or not, very few recognize the details that go into the North Dakota State athletic competitions we enjoy watching. One of those details is science and the various branches of that vague term. From a sheer scientific perspective, there are a host of physical and mental ingredients that need to occur over the course of a play, game or sequence to achieve athletic success. What are these ingredients? And how do they create a recipe for success at North Dakota State? We take a deep dive inside the world of sports science to answer those questions. BY Nolan P. Schmidt PHOTOS BY Ryan Workman, Bruce Crummy, Carrie Snyder, Randy Sartin, Dave Eggen/Inertia and Nolan P. Schmidt


FOOTBALL SPEED,VELOCITY AND ACCELERATION North Dakota State is full of electric playmakers on both the offensive and defensive side of the football. A few of those are senior running back Ty Brooks, who is known for his speed and breaking off big runs. Another is quarterback Trey Lance, who has turned heads so far in his redshirt freshman season with his athletic ability.

SPEED The distance traveled per unit of time

VELOCITY The speed at which something is moving in a particular direction

ACCELERATION Process in which velocity changes (changing speed or direction

But just how athletic and speedy are these two? From a scientific perspective, each has impressive speed, velocity and acceleration. All of those terms are separate from one another in the world of physics and is calculated in a different way. That is often misconstrued as many believe they all mean the same thing. All of these variables are determined by your anatomical make-up. Take Ty Brooks as an example, he is listed at 5-foot-9, 180 pounds on NDSU's roster. Compare that to Trey Lance, who stands 6-foot-3, 221 pounds. One would assume that Brooks has greater speed, velocity and acceleration because of his lower center of gravity. However, how does that theory hold up when calculating average speed, velocity and acceleration. They are all calculated in different ways, using different formulas. Speed = distance/time Velocity = v (final velocity) + u (initial velocity)/2 Acceleration = Δv (change in velocity)/ Δt (time)





Black Mamba Snake 20 miles per hour

We'll use speed as the barometer here. Ty Brooks' longest rush on the season was 57 yards against UC Davis on September 21. Lance's longest run was 61 yards in the season opener against Butler. Given that those are comparable values, let's determine their speed.

Komodo Dragon 13 miles per hour

It took Brooks roughly nine seconds to complete a 57-yard run, which included a few jukes, broken tackles and changes in direction (would alter velocity and acceleration). However, let's calculate that speed.

Ty Brooks 12.95 miles per hour

Brooks Speed = 57 yards/9 seconds = 12.95 miles per hour Gray Squirrel 12.4 miles per hour

Now, Lance's run was four yards longer, but it took him nearly 12 seconds to get to the endzone from 61 yards out. This included a change in direction (would alter velocity and acceleration) and some broken tackles.

Trey Lance 11.65 miles per hour

Lance Speed = 61 yards/12 seconds = 10.39 miles per hour Yet, if we shorten Lance's run to 57 yards, like Brooks, he runs it in about 10 seconds.

Domestic Chicken 9 miles per hour

Lance Speed = 57 yards/10 seconds = 11.65 miles per hour

CENTER OF GRAVITY The point through which the force of gravity acts on an object or system

In this lone piece of analysis, Brooks appears to be faster than Lance by about 1.3 miles per hour in a 57-yard stretch. Now, that is not taking into account velocity and acceleration, but speed alone.



THE MECHANICS OF THE JUMP SHOT THE SET-UP Becoming a successful jump shooter like Cameron Hunter begins and ends with repeatability. It begins with your center of gravity and leg usage. While many wannabe hoopsters believe becoming a good shooter is all in the upper body, your lower body is the primary source for getting the ball to the rim. It’s true that good form is key, but the power of a jump shot comes from your legs and being squared up to the basket. Look at Hunter here, his body is straight up and down with his feet pointing towards the floor. The amount of air he has underneath him showcases how much power he is using in his lower body. Hunter’s repeatable form and reliance on the lower body has helped him become a lethal shooter for NDSU. For his career, Hunter is shooting an impressive 41 percent from long range.




THE ANGLE While focusing on the lower body is vital in a successful jump shot, the shooting form is obviously important as well. The shooting form can be broken down using a 90-degree plane. Take for example sophomore Sam Griesel, who cocks the ball back at roughly a 50-60 degree mark when he is about to take a shot. His arms are also completely lined up with the basket. If a player dips below a 40-degree angle on their shot release, they are putting more pressure on their arms to shoot the ball, rather than legs and shot form.


Michelle Gaislerova is perhaps North Dakota State’s best shooter. Looking at her release, you can see her shooting arm is at almost a perfect 90-degree angle as she is releasing her shot. As a player releases the basketball, they want their shooting arm as close to 90 degrees as possible. With this constant release, Gaislerova made a team-high 75 three-point shots a year ago.

THE ARCH The angle of a shooting arm comes into play when we discuss the arch of a basketball. Statistically, players have a higher chance of making a shot when they have higher arch. Yet, how does one achieve a “good” arch on their shot? Take senior Rylee Nudell as an example. Upon shooting a jump shot, Nudell’s shooting arm cocks back anywhere between 50-60 degrees. Because of this, the ball is likely to have a more upward trajectory as it heads to the basket. On the flip side, if Nudell’s arm came down to a 40-45-degree angle, the shot would be flatter with less arch and upward trajectory. If stats prove us right, Nudell’s shot would have a higher chance of going in with more arch than less arch. Nudell is a career 48 percent shooter for the Bison.



WINGSPAN Tyson Ward likes to use his long and slender frame in various facets of his game. Whether it is playing defense and using his long arms to get into passing lanes or going up for a dunk on a defender, the length is a key trait in Ward’s game. Ward stands 6-foot-6. If we abide by the thought process of Leonardo Da Vinci, we would assume Ward’s wingspan would be the same as his height (6-foot-6). However, with Ward’s long arms, we ascertain that Ward’s wingspan is somewhere between 6-foot-10 and 7 feet. With that four to six-inch difference, Ward has a wingspan that is six percent longer than Da Vinci’s assumption. This gives him the ability to disrupt plays on defense as well as reach over the top of defenders on offense.





THE POWER OF A PIN FULCRUM A pivot point around which a lever turns or something that plays a central role in or is in the center of a situation or activity.

SECOND-CLASS LEVER Resistance (or load) in the middle: the effort is applied on one side of the resistance and the fulcrum is located on the other side.

THIRD-CLASS LEVER Effort in the middle: the resistance (or load) is on one side of the effort and the fulcrum is located on the other side.



There is nothing more sought after in the sport of wrestling than a pin. The moment when an opponent's shoulder blades touch the canvas is easily the most exciting and emotional sequence in a sport that is purely mono e mono. However, what does it take from a scientific perspective to get your opponent pinned? Senior 165-pounder Andrew Fogarty was a Big 12 runner-up last season for the Bison. He accumulated a 22-6 overall record with nine of those wins coming by way of the pin. Fogarty uses his body in several ways to attain a pin over his opponent. First, Fogarty must take his opponent to the ground in some fashion. From a neutral position, wrestlers use their lower body as an acting force against their opponent. In this sense, the ball of Fogarty's foot is a fulcrum with his calves and legs providing input force into his opponent. This is what is called a second-class lever movement. In a different sense, Fogarty's elbow is a fulcrum with his triceps and biceps providing input force while grappling with an opponent. This is called a third-class lever movement.

Once his opponent is on the ground, Fogarty must use rotation and torque to try and flip his opponent over.

ROTATION A circular movement of an object around a center (or point) of rotation.

TORQUE A measure of the force that can cause an object to rotate about an axis.

FORCE A push or pull upon an object resulting from the object's interaction with another object.

With his opponent in the bottom position, Fogarty must sometimes rotate around his opponent (opponent being "the center" of rotation) to achieve the correct positioning. Torque is applied by Fogarty when attempting to flip his opponent from his stomach to his back. This torque can be applied to the opposition's legs or arms at any given time. Once he has his opponent close to a pin (imagine a near fall scenario), it comes down to force. Force is calculated by multiplying mass by acceleration. Does Andrew Fogarty have the strength to exert enough force to push his opponent's shoulder blades dows to the mat? As we have seen in the past, he certainly has the capability to do it.


CENTER OF MASS & GRAVITY Sophomore heavyweight Brandon Metz is 6-foot-2, 285 pounds. Having to go toe-to-toe with other heavyweight wrestlers on a dual to dual basis, Metz is aware that it takes a strong center of mass and gravity to achieve success. In matches where takedowns, pins and near fall scenarios are relatively rare, Metz uses his mass to score escape points on his opponents. Use the example of a circle or a square. The center of mass for those shapes are directly in the middle. The same can be said for the human body and heavyweight wrestlers. A heavyweight’s center of gravity is likely in the same position as their center of mass. For many wrestlers, it’s in between the waistline and the knees.

CENTER OF MASS The average position of all the parts of the system, weighted according to their masses.

CENTER OF GRAVITY The point through which the force of gravity acts on an object or system. 30


For Metz, getting his opponent off his center of mass and gravity opens the door to takedowns for the heavyweight. Obviously, force and momentum play a role in all of this, but if Metz looks to alter the center of mass and gravity, he has a higher probability of getting his opponent to the mat.


SWING SCIENCE THE BACKSWING From a purely physical standpoint, the amount of success a golfer has is based on their swing (obviously). Hitting the ball well off the tee and finding fairways lays the foundation for success on the course. Take Andrew Israelson as an example, the senior tied for the individual Summit League title for the Bison last season. His 73.29 stroke average was best on the Bison roster and much of that had to do with Israelson's ability to avoid the rough off the tee. But how does a golfer's backswing impact finding the fairway? The body's flexibility is key in a successful golf swing and it is no different for Israelson. This flexibility allows a golfer to create a certain amount of torque on a swing.

TORQUE A measure of the force that can cause an object to rotate about an axis.

ANGULAR DISPLACEMENT The angle through which a point revolves around a center or line has been rotated in a specified sense about a specified axis.

The best golfers in the country have anywhere from a 35-45 degree hip rotation throughout their swing. That creates torque in the lower body. However, one must also take into account the torque being established in the upper body. A golfer can rotate their shoulder up to 155 degrees on a backswing. Together, that creates a mark called angular displacement. For reference, an average golfer can have an angular displacement between 65 and 75 degrees. Professional-level golfers can have as much as a 110 to 115-degree angular displacement. The more angular displacement Israelson has on his backswing, the more force he will have when striking the ball off the tee. This is caused by a higher acceleration of the clubhead as it comes closer to the ball. A high-level professional golfer can reach a clubhead acceleration of up to 120 miles per hour. On average, a golfer can swing the clubhead at a 95-100 mile per hour mark depending on the amount of angular displacement.



GOLF THE FOLLOW THROUGH The first half of a golfer’s swing creates the acceleration and distance you see on a drive. However, how fast is that white ball going as it flies through the air? Junior Taylor McCorkle led the Bison in stroke average last year and set the school record for a single round score. On average and depending on variables such as angular displacement and club arc on the backswing, a club may only touch the ball for half of a millisecond. Regardless of the level of golf, the ball is likely off the tee in less than a millisecond. Exerting force onto the ball makes that quick movement happen, sending the ball into the air. Professional players can strike a ball with as much as 3,000 pounds of force. In McCorkle’s case, we can safely assume she strikes the ball with as much as 1,800 to 2,000 pounds of force on a tee shot. The force exerted on the ball by the clubhead lends its hand to the speed at which the golf ball travels at. If McCorkle is striking her tee shot with 1,800 to 2,000 pounds of force, the ball can travel at speeds of up to 100 to 120 miles per hour.

GOLF BALL SPEED COMPARISON Bubba Watson 180 miles per hour

Golden Eagle (Flying/Diving) 175 miles per hour

Andrew Israelson 130 miles per hour

Cheetah (Sprinting) 120 miles per hour

Taylor McCorkle 110 miles per hour

Freight Train Passing Through Fargo 80 miles per hour




A key piece to success on the volleyball court is being able to block an opponent's spike attempt. Many times, a blocked spike leads to points for the defensive team. While successful blocking has plenty to do with timing and pure athleticism, coaches across the country look for tall and long girls to occupy the front lines of the net. Take a look at NDSU's volleyball team for example. Each of their top blockers is over 6 feet tall and is equipped with dangerously long arms. When put in a one, two or three blocking set, these Bison blockers can occupy up to 130 square feet in front of the net. Obviously, with more blockers, the higher the percentages of actually getting a blocked spike. However, North Dakota State's volleyball team has proven the ability to block shots with one, two, three or even four blockers jumping in unison on a block attempt.





THE SPIKE Alexis Bachmeier has become a master of the kill for the Bison. Racking up over 150 kills so far this season, Bachmeier is a key force in NDSU’s offensive attack. However, it takes a certain amount of body control and focus to be able to have a spike that is timed well, hit hard and lands on the hardwood for a point. First, it begins with the jump. In many cases, Bachmeier will take a two to three step start in anticipating a spike attempt. Once the ball is set up for her, it’s vital for her to do two things: time the jump and elevate properly. If she jumps early or late, she will either hit the net with her spike attempt or not get the proper amount of power on the hit. Timing the jump and elevating go hand in hand. Bachmeier needs to account for the time it takes her to take her two to three-step head start. If she does that, she will properly brace her legs for a more elevated jump.



Next, it’s the form. Like a basketball player and their jump shot, a volleyball player wants to pick their spot on a kill. Bachmeier will square up to where she wants the ball to go before her jump. As she prepares to spike the ball, she will make a straight shoulder plane as well as an even hip plane. If her body is not balanced in this way, the spike may go awry.


ENERGY A measurement of the ability of something to do work.

Finally, the spike with the hand. This takes proper timing and a swift shoulder rotation to build up the right amount of power and speed after hitting the ball. Bachmeier does this to put as much downward force on the volleyball as possible. In physics, this is deemed as Bachmeier exerting “work” through energy.

WORK To move energy from one form to another 35


SOCCER AND THE HUMAN BODY Whether we are aware of it or not, soccer is perhaps one of the most taxing sports on the human body. Much of this is due to the constant motion and quick changes of pace over the course of a 90-minute match. While it may prove difficult for people who have never played soccer at first, athletes are trained properly to deal with the daunting physical task soccer presents. For reference, Kate Swanis, a freshman midfielder for Bison soccer can run up to (or more) than nine and a half miles over the course of a 90-minute match. To give that some sort of perspective, that is the equivalent of running up and down Gate City Bank Field inside the Fargodome 139 times.



That is not even taking into account the various paces the body plays soccer at. Take for example if Swanis were to be sprinting down the field or fighting for a ball with an opponent. If that were the case, her muscle work rate is 30 times higher than it would be if she were to be jogging. This is why recovery is so crucial in the game of soccer. It's fairly obvious that if the body is working 30 times harder than it normally does, that an athlete will feel tired following competition. The way they recover (post-game meal, rest, ice, etc.) can only help to improve their endurance for the long haul of a season.



WORK RATE The extent to which a player contributes to running and chasing in a match while not in possession of the ball.


SHOTS ON GOAL There are two keys to getting a shot on goal or a shot that lands in the back of the net. Power and accuracy are the two factors determining whether a player succeeds or not on a shot attempt. Paige Goaley is a freshman forward for the Bison and her primary focus is to put the ball on the net in some capacity. Her hardest kick can reach up to 50-60 miles per hour and depending on where she is shooting from, those kicks can make it to the goal in mere milliseconds. If Goaley happened to be in a penalty kick scenario or on a fastbreak going towards the goal, she must first put an adequate amount of power on the ball while staying accurate and fooling the goalkeeper. She has a 37-degree lateral window in front of the goal to be successful on a kick in front of the goal. Those lateral angles change depending on where she is on the field. Although accuracy is oftentimes more impactful than pure power when a soccer player shoots. Putting the ball in a spot where the goalkeeper can not reach is far more effective than a laser with no control. The issue of over kicking a ball has long plagued soccer players at every level. However, if Goaley picks her spot and focuses on where she wants the ball to go, she is more likely to put it in that position or thereabouts.


BY Nolan P. Schmidt PHOTO BY Hillary Ehlen ACTION PHOTOS BY Bruce Crummy And Tim Sanger



Playing the vital position of fullback, senior Garrett Malstrom and redshirt freshman Hunter Luepke are key performers in the Bison offense.


spotlight is often put upon the North Dakota State tight end group. The Bison “Crew Chiefs” of Ben Ellefson, Noah Gindorff and Josh Babicz are three of the most valuable red zone threats in the FCS. They rightfully deserve the attention they receive, but there is more to the Crew Chief’s room than meets the eye. We continually overlook a valuable portion of that room, the fullbacks. The Bison fullback lineage can be traced back to great names like Jedre Cyr, Andrew Bonnet and Tyler Jangula. Oftentimes, those names went unrecognized unless they were scoring a touchdown. Their physical, hard-nosed run blocking laid the foundation for the North Dakota State offense we see today. Senior Garrett Malstrom and redshirt freshman Hunter Luepke are looking to

add their names to the list of great Bison fullbacks. While both offer slightly different skill sets, they have become a one-two punch (literally) in run blocking and pass protection schemes. Like the fullbacks that came before them, Malstrom and Luepke’s job on the field is often deemed “thankless”. They do the dirty work, blocking downfield while receiving a minimal role in the actual offense. Despite limited carries and receptions in their stat books, Malstrom and Luepke do not see their job as “thankless”. In actuality, the outsider sees the fullback as a thankless position. Inside the locker room and throughout the football program, the fullbacks are held in high esteem because of what they bring to the offense. Malstrom is the veteran leader of the fullbacks. He and Ben Ellefson are the only two seniors in the Crew Chief


room this season. Playing in 15 games in 2017 and 15 more in 2018, Malstrom has seen plenty of snaps as a Bison. He even started at fullback in the national championship win over Eastern Washington last year. Yet, it wasn’t always smooth sailing for Malstrom as he entered North Dakota State’s football program. An allconference player from Frazee-Vergas High School, Malstrom primarily played offensive line and linebacker. While the transition to fullback was a little bumpy at times, many would agree that Malstrom is as stellar a run blocker as the front five for NDSU. “There is a lot of coaching, that’s for sure. We have a really great coaching staff and coach [Tyler] Roehl is willing to put in that extra time,” Malstrom said of his early years at NDSU. “Whenever you have a question, they’ll be there to be able to give you some help when you need it.” Ultimately, Malstrom was able to find his role in NDSU’s offense. It was not as a pass-catching fullback like an

Andrew Bonnet before him, but as a punishing lead blocker for the Bison running backs. Malstrom could care less how many times he touches the ball, he would much rather lay a good block. “The fullback has always been a staple of the NDSU offense and I personally love blocking. There is nothing better than laying a great block on somebody and I would take that over catching the ball, to be honest,” Malstrom said. “It’s just having a mentality that our group has really embraced. You bring your hard hat and lunch pail to work every day and you may not get the ball, but you’re going to work your butt off. If you do get the ball, you’re going to take advantage of the opportunity.” Up until this season, the 6-foot-0, 250-pound Malstrom had not made a reception in his Bison career. With that massive frame in the middle of the I formation, Malstrom has garnered the name of “Meat Stick” from the team. Upon looking at him, you’ll understand why he was bestowed this moniker. Now in his fifth year in the football

program, Malstrom says the work ethic instilled in him is what he’ll carry with him for life. “The work ethic. You need to come to work every day and do your best or else you’re going to get beat,” he said. “That’s just the way it works here and at this level of college football, if you don’t put your best work out there, you won’t see results. That’s the way it is in football and the way it is in life. I feel like anyone can attest to that.” Malstrom also has the luxury of swapping reps with his fellow fullback Hunter Luepke. The two often switch out every play. Not only does this allow Malstrom to get some rest (he has played through a nagging shoulder issue and has missed games due to a knee injury in 2019), but it also gives the fullback tandem opportunities to see the game from a different perspective. “Hunter has his place and I have mine. We’re different players because he is a little bit more athletic than I am so I’m more of a traditional run blocking,” Malstrom says humbly. “Once the game gets going and we get past our scripted plays, we’ll switch every other play.

The more fresh bodies you can get in there, the better. We can both do the job, so why not wear them out with our physicality. Two is better than one.”

“I just want to do my best to make this team succeed in any way I can. If my number gets called for a pass play, then that’s good, but if I have to be in there for blocking that’s just fine with me too. I just want the team to win on Saturday.” - Hunter Luepke

As the lone senior fullback, Malstrom does take a certain amount of responsibility in teaching Luepke and the other fullbacks. Behind Luepke is sophomore Austin Avery and a true freshman in Logan Hofstedt, meaning that the Bison fullback position will be rather young come 2020. For Malstrom, he has been impressed by Luepke’s willingness to learn the game and the Bison way. “I want to do things the Bison way and he is a great kid and he’s picked up on everything. Hunter is super smart, super athletic and I cannot say enough good things about him. It’s nice for me to have another fullback to talk to,” he said. “Say if he is in on a play or I am, we can ask each other what we’re seeing out there or how the defense is playing or if we’re playing it right. That is a way that I can help him out because I have played enough snaps where I can understand what’s going on.”

Garrett Malstrom Senior 6-foot-0, 250 pounds Hometown: Vergas, Minnesota Played in all 15 games in 2018 including a start in the national championship win over Eastern Washington.

Compared to Malstrom, one could say Hunter Luepke was more equipped for the running back position. He was a bruising runner during his high school career at Spencer High School in Wisconsin. By the end of his prep days, Luepke had rushed for 4,452 yards and 82 touchdowns. For his career, he accumulated 5,770 all-purpose yards and 95 total touchdowns. While he played running back in high school, his big frame was perfect for the fullback position at NDSU. Using a redshirt year last season, Luepke was able to learn the position and the Bison offense. 2018 was also spent building on an already big frame. “It was a little different when I was first coming into summer and fall camp,” Luepke said of the move to fullback. “I’m really thankful for that redshirt year just to get in with the guys and have Garrett and Ben [Ellefson] and those upperclassmen teach me the ways of fullback and some tight end. It was very helpful for this year.” In an era of football that is sometimes driven by ego and personality, one could wonder why Luepke would willingly take on the fullback role. Given his stellar marks in high school, the dropoff in touches might upset a player. As we all know, Bison football is not defined by egos and Luepke is no different. In fact, he thoroughly enjoys his spot at fullback.

Hunter Luepke Redshirt Freshman 6-foot-1, 249 pounds Hometown: Spencer, Wisconsin Has seen time in each of NDSU’s nine games this season. Rushed for 4,452 yards and 82 touchdowns in his high school career. 42


“It’s a lot of fun actually. Being a fullback here at NDSU, we may not get the ball as much but we’re in on some pretty intense blocks all the time,” Luepke said. “It’s a lot of fun getting your face in there and making big holes for the running backs or being in pass protection for the quarterback too.” So far, Luepke has played in each of NDSU’s nine games. He offers a different skill set for the Bison offense which allows him to take the occasional carry or snag a reception out of the backfield. That role will only become larger as his Bison career moves along.

“I just want to do my best to make this team succeed in any way I can. If my number gets called for a pass play, then that’s good, but if I have to be in there for blocking that’s just fine with me too,” he said. “I just want the team to win on Saturday.” The relationship Luepke has with fellow fullback Malstrom has grown as time has gone on. With Malstrom’s career winding down and Luepke’s just beginning, the redshirt freshman is making sure to maximize the time he does have with Malstrom in the Crew Chief meetings. “I’ve learned quite a bit from him and he’s been very helpful in the meeting rooms and on the field. When I have questions, like last year during fall camp or even this spring or fall, he is always there to help me,” Luepke said of Malstrom. “In that sense, he is also bettering his career here too. He is an awesome guy to have in the tight end/ fullback room and on this team.” Some may view the fullbacks as “underdogs” in the Bison offense. While Luepke says they do enjoy being called underdogs, they do fully understand their role on the team. If not for them, North Dakota State may not be top dogs in the FCS year after year. “We do, but in the same sense, we’re just doing it for the team. Everything here is about the team, not an individual,” he said. “We’re working for those wins on Saturday and that’s what we love most.” In the end, the fullback position is a true embodiment of the Bison way. Sure, Garrett Malstrom and Hunter Luepke may not touch the ball over the course of the game, but they do not care. What they do, game in and game out is all for the team and the team’s success. That quality alone is irreplaceable. It’s time to start looking at the Bison fullback position as “priceless” rather than “thankless”.



The Art of the

Junior hitters Alexis Bachmeier and Emily Halverson have emerged as stars for NDSU volleyball.


You may not meet a more wholesome and kind duo of Division I studentathletes than Bison juniors Emily Halverson and Alexis Bachmeier. They’re willing to carry on a normal conversation with you at any given time. Conversations could be about Emily’s summer work arranging flowers for Prairie Petals here in Fargo and her plans to arrange a friend’s wedding in the next year. All that talk of weddings leads to Bachmeier discussing her ideal wedding venues, a list that may or not be eight deep at this point. At one point on this day, they even pondered going into business with one another after graduation. It’s not the first time the idea has been brought up, but they begin to discuss the notion a bit more on an early October morning inside the Bentson-Bunker Fieldhouse. Their personality no doubt stems from their Midwestern upbringings (Halverson from Iowa, Bachmeier from Fargo). This illustrates a few things, one being the friendship the two hold. This is chemistry that runs throughout the Bison volleyball program. Secondly, it shows that the two do not feel the need to talk volleyball all the time. There was





»» Hometown: Fargo, North Dakota »» Leads NDSU in kills this season »» Her favorite actor is Josh Duhamel (because that’s her cousin)

little mention of the sport outside of the interview questions asked of them. That is a breath of fresh air. However, when it comes time to play, either in practice or a match, the flip gets switched. Gone are the conversations of flower arrangements and wedding planning, it is time to compete and improve. One could say both Halverson and Bachmeier have upped their level of play from last season and transitioned into real stars on the court for Jen Lopez and North Dakota State. One could see the budding stardom of Halverson dating back to her prep days. She possessed the physical traits to be a successful middle hitter immediately for the Division I school who recruited her. The 6-foot-3 Halverson was a standout at Iowa City West High School in Iowa City, Iowa. She was an all-conference second-team selection in her career and helped lead Iowa City West to three consecutive 5A state tournaments in her sophomore, junior and senior season. Because of that success and her physical attributes, Halverson played in 22 matches for the Bison during her freshman season in 2017. She then played in all 29 matches last season and a whopping 111 sets. Through her first two seasons on campus, Halverson has racked up 247 kills, 170 blocks, 358.5 total points and a .237 hitting percentage. At this point in the season, Halverson is already looking to set career highs in all of those statistics as Summit League Tournament time draws near. She currently has 141 kills on the season (at stellar a .309 hitting percentage no less), 52 blocks and 177.5 total points. That versatility as a middle hitter is something Halverson has focused on over the course of her career at NDSU.

“It’s something we have been talking about as a group of middles lately. It’s just always being up and what that means is we transition so that we can always be up for our setter and we’ll either hold a block or get set,” Halverson said. “We just always want to be available for the ball whether we get it or not and that’s our main focus. That is what helps us stay versatile and be able to get those blocks and get up and attack.” What has aided Halverson in her success so far this season is the chemistry with her teammates on and off the floor. The Bison only graduated one senior last season in McKenzie Burke, meaning that almost the entire roster returned for 2019. With the addition of three freshmen, the Bison have picked up where they left off from a team chemistry standpoint. “Since we only graduated one senior last year in McKenzie [Burke], we didn’t lose that many people. We’re a very tight-knit group since we’ve been playing together for so long and we only have three freshmen this year and honestly, the coaches recruited them very well too,” she said. “They fit right into the team and it’s great because we are friends on and off the court. When we’re playing together it’s like playing next to your best friend.” With the Summit League slate in a fever pitch and tournament time on the horizon, Halverson wants to see the Bison improve each day. “Our main focus right now is stacking days and doing a little bit better at practice each day. Having those will turn up in the game results. We want to try to be a little bit better the next time we step on the court,” she said. There is no debate that North Dakota State volleyball has a bright future.

While this year’s result has yet to be determined, the Bison only graduate one senior again this season. Meaning, that a host of returners will be back for 2020. Halverson has aspects of her game she wants to work on over the next year, but 2020 is certainly not her focus at the moment. “Personally, I would like to see general improvements overall. I think one area I would like to improve in is hitter-setter connections. Those are really coming along nicely and once we have another spring under our belt, those are going to be really solidified,” she said. “As a team, we have a really good work ethic and everybody shows up and practices really hard. So I think if we keep working at that, the skills will fall into place and freshmen will start to step up. I see a lot of good coming in the future.” If one were to comment on how physically imposing Halverson is, the same may not be said for the junior Bachmeier. A Fargo North High School graduate, Bachmeier is listed at just 5-foot-9 on the Bison roster. She will admittedly tell you that she is actually 5-foot-8, which is well below the average for an outside hitter. Because of that, Bachmeier was not heavily recruited throughout her Spartan career. Although she was a three-time all-state and all-conference player, her height turned some coaches away. However, Bachmeier only had one school on her list from the beginning and that was North Dakota State. All she had to do was get the Bison coaches to her high school games. “I wasn’t even scouted that heavily because I knew that NDSU was my school. It was my dream school and that was option A. I worked super hard to get here and get my name to the coaches. Eventually, they started coming to the





»» Hometown: Iowa City, Iowa »» Leads NDSU in hitting percentage this season »» Her favorite song is Dreams by Fleetwood Mac

games and now I’m here,” Bachmeier said. The reasoning behind Bachmeier’s insistence on NDSU? Her family ties to the school. She has two relatives enshrined in the Bison Athletic Hall of Fame and in all, has 19 relatives that have attended North Dakota State. Carrying on that family legacy was important in choosing her school. “My parents were huge Bison fans and to carry on the tradition of the Bachmeiers was really special to me. You don’t really see that anywhere else either, there is just a long line of legacy in my family. It just made total sense for me to come here,” she said. Playing in 23 matches as a true freshman, Bachmeier finished the year with only 10 kills. In her sophomore effort, she exploded, racking up 249 kills and 303.5 total points. Her performance in 2018 landed her on the Summit League preseason watch list in 2019. Bachmeier has not fallen short of that recognition as the season has gone along either. She currently leads NDSU with 246 kills (with a .159 hitting percentage) and 281.5 total points. “I think I just developed a little bit more confidence in the offseason. I told myself this year ‘you’re a 5-foot-8 hitter, just go up and some damage’,” Bachmeier said of her improvement in 2019. “My coaches have been telling me to swing away at the ball and that’s all I’ve been doing is swinging away.” But how does a 5-foot-8 hitter succeed? Especially when blockers in collegiate volleyball are well over 6 feet tall? For Bachmeier, it’s less about physical attributes and more of a mental contest. “When I step on the court, I try to envision myself as big as them and I try

to tell myself that I am as big, as strong and as fast as them. Then, I try to go do those things, being big and being great,” she said. “My teammates are really awesome about hyping me up and putting me in good situations where I can see the court really well and see the big hands in front of me.” While the mental part of killing is her focus, it is also worth noting that Bachmeier possesses a stellar leaping ability. Thanks to this, she can elevate to the level of taller blockers and hitters in the NCAA. Like Halverson said, chemistry aids in success on the court. The same opinion is held by Bachmeier, who loves being around her teammates and coaches. “We’re all each other’s best friends. We love hanging out with each other, love to joke around. You can ask our coaches, we never shut up, ever,” she said. “We’re always talking, always communicating and love one another. At the same time, we always have each other’s backs so the chemistry is super strong and closeknit.” The Summit League is a wide-open conference on a nightly basis. Any team regardless of conference rank can take down another. Simply look at NDSU’s upset win over Omaha in the Summit League Tournament last season as evidence. With tournament time near, Bachmeier knows the importance of team performance. “We have a saying on our team that whoever shows up that night is going to win the game. Ranking don’t really matter in the Summit League because the results are so random. We just know that whenever we step out onto the court, we have to win that game,” she said. “The goal is to prove that we can work as six people together, not six individuals. That is one thing our

coaches have really been hitting home, work as a team and not as an individual.” As that time comes, Bachmeier wants to improve upon things that will make her teammate’s jobs easier. “Servicing is definitely something that I can work on. If we get really good at that, my teammates are going to be in a lot better situations. I just want to make sure I get better contact and that’ll be better for my teammates,” she said. While the future is hard to ignore, Bachmeier is ready for this team to take the next step right now in 2019. “We really just take it day by day, practice by practice, game by game. Obviously, we don’t want to get ahead of ourselves because when that happens in sports, it starts to snowball and you’re no longer in the moment, you’re not present,” she said. “When we can all collectively remember as a team to win the day or practice, that’s when we’ll be successful. We’re focusing on how we can be great at this moment because that will set us up for future greatness.” The art of killing a volleyball and scoring takes physical and mental discipline. Juniors Emily Halverson and Alexis Bachmeier understand the art of the kill and they show it on a match to match basis. However, when the nets are down and the volleyballs put away, the art of the kill is the least of their worries. They would rather discuss their future business endeavors with one another. That is what makes them special student-athletes at North Dakota State. Not for what they do on the court, but what they are off the court: wholly and unashamedly them.



Hillary Ehlen

We asked NDSU junior midfielder Brookelyn Dew to give us her best in-game expressions in these scenarios.

...when she and a defender are in a battle for possession. 52


...when the through ball gets intercepted by an opposing defender.

...the look she gives Dani Jasper on a mistimed cross.

...when a freshman has to get up and start singing on a team bus ride.

...when someone gives her their best Coach Regan impression.

...when she gets caught on a bogus offside call.

...when her shot finds the back of the net.


Hillary Ehlen

With Dew playing in the midfield and primarily on offense, we coaxed sophomore defender Dani Stuber to give us her best game faces.

...the after header face.



...when she sees the official reach for his yellow card even though she definitely did not commit the foul.

...when she sees an opponent flop on a tackle attempt.

...when a forward gets behind her but Monica Polgar makes a killer save.

...when Coach Regan breaks out his victory dance.

...the look she gives an opposing forward who is chirping in her ear.

...when she makes a successful tackle.



ante up Inside the world of Team Makers charitable gaming.




he Team Makers 50/50 raffle has become synonymous with football and men’s basketball games. We hold our collective breath as Dan Michaels reads off the winning ticket number during the third quarter. Whoever happens to win that week is entitled to half of the pot collected that day. Why just half? Why not the whole thing? Whether you are aware of it or not, the other half of that pot is going directly to Team Makers and NDSU athletic scholarships specifically. This is a sector of Team Makers called charitable gaming. Team Makers does this in accordance with the North Dakota Games of Chance Laws and Administrative Rules. This charitable gaming is another creative way for Team Makers to gather funds for Bison athletic scholarships. Everyone loves to win money and with Team Makers 50/50 raffles at each home football and men’s basketball game, Bison fans are given the opportunity to win money. All they have to do is simply purchase a chosen number of raffle tickets. As soon as they pay their raffle entry fee, half of it goes to NDSU athletic scholarships through Team Makers.

Team Makers also offers games of chance at various establishments in Fargo and West Fargo. There, Bison fans can charitably game while simultaneously giving to Team Makers. We went under the hood a bit to learn more about Team Makers charitable gaming with Team Makers Gaming Manager Rick Stenseth. What kind of impact does charitable gaming have on Team Makers and NDSU Athletics? We are only a part of the greater effort to provide scholarship opportunities in support of our athletic programs. In addition to generating dollars for studentathletes, we represent Team Makers in the gaming industry and are considered to be an excellent provider of charitable gaming here in North Dakota. Team Makers has conducted gaming since 1993 and has seen continued growth over many years. Gaming has contributed approximately $500,000 to Team Makers’ efforts each of the last two years and we look forward to seeing that number increase in the future.

How impactful is the 50/50 raffle specifically for NDSU athletic scholarships? The 50/50 began over a decade ago and due to the many dedicated fans of the Bison, each 50/50 Raffle at a football game now provides between 80-90 percent of a full scholarship. That means these past number of years, including the playoff games, the 50/50 has produced funds for eight plus scholarships each year. We have seen expanding participation in the 50/50 each year and there is potential for even greater funding. For example, we raised a pot of $90,000 for the Butler game in Minneapolis and had to stop selling as the system they were using was unable to handle all the demand. The 50/50 is a great way for every fan to play a part in helping the student-athletes and teams. Bison fans can play “games of chance” at various establishments in the Metro. What kind of “games of chance” can people partake in? Bison fans who are at least 21 years of age may wager on all the games we offer at each location. We conduct games allowed by North Dakota Charitable Gaming Laws and Administrative Rules and are


Which Locations Offer Team Makers Charitable Gaming? Holiday Inn 3803 13th Ave S, Fargo Frank’s Lounge 2640 52nd Ave S, Fargo Lucky’s 13 Pub 4301, 17th Ave S, Fargo

Did You Know? Team Makers charitable gaming provides 35-45 parttime and full-time jobs. Some of those jobs could even be given to North Dakota State students.

regulated by the Gaming Division of the ND Attorney General’s Office.

Big Erv’s at Rose Creek 1500 East Rose Creek Pkwy S, Fargo

Games we play include; Twentyone, paper pull-tabs (at jar bars and dispensing devices), electronic pull tabs, paddlewheel, bingo, raffles (50/50 and traditional and we occasionally hold poker tournaments.

Hooligans 509 32nd Ave W, West Fargo

Are there certain goals Team Makers wishes to hit each year with charitable gaming? If so, might that be?

In accordance with Section 99-01.3-02-03 (4), all information and records regarding the conduct of Team Makers charitable gaming are available for review at our gaming offices by appointment. For more information call 701-277-9271 58


In the gaming industry, it is difficult to set any such goals. Gaming is unique as games are based on odds. We cannot set a certain profit margin as with traditional business and then strive to meet such a standard. It is our responsibility to conduct all games honestly and professionally, giving each player an equal opportunity to win. Our revenue is based mostly on the volume of activity. As such, we

Ole & Lena’s 3330 Sheyenne St, West Fargo Barcode Bar & Grill 835 23rd Ave E, West Fargo 50/50 Raffle takes place at each home football and men's basketball game.

are always looking to expand the number of players and keep that patronage coming back. Are you looking to add more establishments to your list of places participating in charitable gaming? Currently, we offer gaming in Fargo at the Holiday Inn, Lucky’s 13, Frank’s Lounge, Big Erv’s at Rose Creek, in addition to the Dome and SHAC for 50/50 raffles. In West Fargo, we operate at Hooligans, Bar Code, and Ole & Lena’s Pizzeria. We are always interested in speaking with interested bar owners to explore opportunities. There are limits to what we are able to do, either by City Code or by the financial viability of a particular location for gaming. Can only Team Makers participate in charitable gaming at an event or an establishment? Or is it open to all NDSU fans too? Anyone of age may wager at any of our locations and play all games. We welcome not only Team Makers and all the fans, but local people who wish to stop by and play. This includes those who are visiting the area, even the fans of the teams that come to play us.


wilson uld What wo y? odell sa


he Bison men's hoops team embraced their journey in 2018-19, making it to the NCAA Tournament. Through the trials and tribulations of that season, the roster created a bond that may never be broken. We put that bond to the test this month to see how well sophomores Jarius Cook and Jaxon Knotek know their teammate Odell Wilson.








2. Who is the GOAT?

LeBron James

LeBron James


3. In your opinion, who is the best dunker of all time?

Vince Carter

LeBron James



Dwight Howard


Chris Brown

Chris Brown

Chris Brown

Milwaukee Bucks

Milwaukee Bucks



Patrick Star

Patrick or Spongebob



1. On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate your dancing ability?

4. If could defend one player for a possession, who would it be?

5. Which musical artist is your guilty pleasure?

6. Who is your go-to 2K team?

7. Which Spongebob character best represents your personality?




bison crossing

Across 3. Who is the only senior on the Bison volleyball roster in 2019?

herenw&egoglod gree

7. Head women’s basketball coach Jory Collins graduated from this school. 8. He is the only current Bison men’s basketball player to hail from the state of Wyoming. 9. Senior striker Elyse Huber played at this Big Ten school before coming to NDSU?

Down 1. This coach has accumulated over 600 career wins in his time at North Dakota State. 2. This male golfer competed in the U.S. Amateur Tournament this summer. 4. This former Bison is now playing for the NFL’s Baltimore Ravens. 5. This NFL team fields the most current NDSU football alumni on its roster. 6. This current NDSU wrestler was one of the two Big 12 runner-ups the Bison had in 2018-19. 7. Head soccer coach Mike Regan is a native of this country. Across 3. KLOS, 7. EMPORIA STATE, 8. QUAYLE, 9. NEBRASKA • Down 1. MUELLER, 2. HOLMGREN, 4. BOARD, 5. PACKERS, 6. FOGARTY, 7. ENGLAND



wordsearch Can you find these science terms in the jumble?

Anatomy Physics Chemistry Biology Velocity

Acceleration Speed Newton Momentum Force


trivia question1

question3 Sophomore guard Heaven Hamling transferred to NDSU in the offseason. Where was she attending school? A. SMU

B. Minnesota


true Bison men’s golf set a 54-hole school record at the Ron Moore Invitational in early October. What was their final score?

A. 290 B. 288

C. 286 D. 285


false Head men’s track & field coach Don Larson has won 35 conference titles in his career at NDSU.

question2 True freshman golfer Vinisha Gunaseelen is the first NDSU studentathlete to hail from this country. A. Indonesia


B. Malaysia


C. India

D. Phillippines

C. Lamar

D. Stephen F. Austin

question5 Defensive coordinator David Braun went to this school to play football.

A. Winona State B. UC Davis C. Wayne State (Neb.) D. Northern Iowa

question6 The Benston/ Bunker fieldhouse was dedicated in what year?

A. 1951 B. 1941 C. 1931 D. 1921


true or false Assistant basketball coach Will Veasley played in four consecutive NCAA Tournaments during his time at Butler.

1. C 2. B 3. D 4. True 5. A 6. C 7. True




edshirt freshman fullback Hunter Luepke celebrates what he believes is a touchdown at the goal line against Northern Iowa on October 12. The touchdown, scored by junior running back Adam Cofield was one of his two touchdowns scored on this day. North Dakota State defeated Northern Iowa 46-14 in this game.

Photo by Hillary Ehlen

Want to contribute? Email your best photos to:






unior linebacker Jabril Cox pursues Missouri State quarterback Peyton Huslig on an October 19 game inside the Fargodome. On this day, NDSU celebrated the annual Trees Bowl by hosting a Code Green themed game. For the first time in program history, the Bison wore green pants, jerseys and helmets. The Bison defeated the Bears 22-0 with Cox racking up seven total tackles in the contest. Photo by Hillary Ehlen

Want to contribute? Email your best photos to:





If you could play a professional sport for any team, who would you play for?

What is one word you would use to describe your personality?

Dan Stibral


Known around the wrestling room as "Gentleman Dan", Stibral has carved out a solid place at the heavyweight spot for the Bison. Heading into his senior season, the Tabor, South Dakota, native holds a career record of 48-27, including an impressive 18-7 mark last season. In his Bison career, Gentleman Dan has pinned 15 opponents.

Minnesota Vikings


Connor Schank The senior has been a steady contributor for Bison cross country since his freshman season in 2016. Last season, Schank finished in the Bison top seven in each of their six meets. He was also a top-five finisher for NDSU at the Summit League Championships. The Winsted, Minnesota, product is also a vital piece of the indoor and outdoor track & field squads.

MN Twins


Arsenal F.C.


New York Liberty


Denver Nuggets



Monica Polgar


Polgar will likely go down as one of North Dakota State's top goalkeepers. The senior from Cupertino, California has been in net for the Bison for 65 matches dating back to 2016. She will conclude her career in the top three in NDSU history for total saves and wins by a goaltender.

Cirkeline Rimdal


Rimdal played a solid role off the bench for the Bison in 2018-19. The Denmark native played 19 minutes per game last season and shot the ball at a 47 percent clip. Her career-high eight points against North Dakota on January 20 helped the Bison to a 12-point Summit League victory that day.

Chris Quayle


Since transferring to NDSU ahead of the 2017-18 season, Quayle has been a vital piece to Dave Richman's puzzle. Possessing the athletic ability to knife through a defender on offense and shoot the ball at a high level, Quayle shot an efficient 41 percent from the field last season. He is also a superb onball defender for the Bison.


What is your top Thanksgiving day dish?

Who is your least favorite professional athlete?

If you had to compare yourself to a superhero, which one would you most closely resemble?


Aaron Rodgers



James Harden

The Hulk because of Bison XC core

Pumpkin pie!

Cristiano Ronaldo


Thanksgiving food is new to me, but I really like the turkey and stuffing

I don’t have a least favorite athlete. I do not search for people that do not inspire me.

If I could choose who to be it would be Storm from X-Men.

Pumpkin Pie

Tom Brady

Captain America




Men’s Basketball

athletics calendar

at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi - Islander Invitational Corpus Christi, Texas 6:30 p.m.

11/17 Wrestling vs Purdue Fargo, N.D. 1 p.m.





Women’s Basketball


at Purdue Fort Wayne Fort Wayne, Ind. 7 p.m. ET

at Northern Iowa Cedar Falls, Iowa 6:30 p.m.

at Denver Denver, Colo. 1 p.m. MT




Women’s Basketball


Women’s Basketball

vs Minnesota Crookston (Exhibition) Fargo, N.D. 7 p.m.

Summit League Women’s Soccer Championship Brookings, S.D.

vs Northern Illinois Fargo, N.D. 1 p.m.



Men’s Basketball

Men’s Basketball

vs Mayville State Fargo, N.D. 7 p.m.

vs Cal Poly Fargo, N.D 1 p.m.





Summit League Women’s Soccer Championship Brookings, S.D.

vs North Dakota Fargo, N.D. 7 p.m.




Men’s And Women’s Cross Country

Summit League Tournament Denver, Colo.

NCAA Midwest Regional Stillwater, Okla. 10 a.m.


11/2 Men’s And Women’s Cross Country Summit League Championships Fargo, N.D. – Rose Creek Golf Course 11 a.m.

11/2 Football at Youngstown State Youngstown, Ohio 5 p.m.

11/3 Soccer at Denver Denver, Colo. 1 p.m.

11/3 Volleyball at Western Illinois Macomb, Ill. 1 p.m.

11/3 Wrestling vs Cal State Bakersfield Fargo, N.D. 2 p.m.

11/5 Men’s Basketball at Kansas State Manhattan, Kan. 7 p.m. 72


at South Dakota Vermillion, S.D. 7 p.m.

11/9 Soccer


Summit League Women’s Soccer Championship Brookings, S.D.

Men’s Basketball

11/9 Wrestling 49th Annual Bison Open Fargo, N.D. 9 a.m.

11/9 Football vs Western Illinois Fargo, N.D. 2:30 p.m.

vs UT Rio Grande Valley Islander Invitational Corpus Christi, Texas 5 p.m.

11/15 Women’s Basketball vs Valparaiso Fargo, N.D. 7 p.m.

11/16 Football vs South Dakota Fargo, N.D. 2:30 p.m.

11/17 Men’s Basketball vs Stony Brook - Islander Invitational Corpus Christi, Texas 1 p.m.

11/17 Volleyball vs Oral Roberts Fargo, N.D. 1 p.m.

11/18 Women’s Basketball at Creighton Omaha, Neb. 6 p.m.

11/22 Volleyball

Wrestling at Indiana Bloomington, Ind. 6 p.m.

11/22 Women’s Basketball vs Iowa State Fargo, N.D. 7 p.m.

11/23 Volleyball Summit League Tournament Denver, Colo.

11/23 Men’s And Women’s Cross Country NCAA Championships Terre Haute, Ind.

11/23 Football at Southern Illinois Carbondale, Ill. 2 p.m.

11/23 Men’s Basketball vs Utah Valley Fargo, N.D. 5 p.m.

11/24 Volleyball Summit League Tournament Denver, Colo.

11/24 Wrestling at Northwestern Evanston, Ill. 2 p.m.

11/25 Women’s Basketball vs Wyoming Fargo, N.D. 7 p.m.

11/26 Men’s Basketball at Idaho Moscow, Idaho TBA

11/30 Women’s Basketball

sam griesel

at Northeastern Boston, Mass. 12 p.m.

Coming Up In December 12/1 Women’s Basketball at New Hampshire Durham, N.H. 11 a.m.

12/2 Wrestling vs Augustana (S.D.) Fargo, N.D. 2 p.m.

12/3 Men’s Basketball at Indiana State Terre Haute, Ind. 4:30 p.m. CT

12/5 Women’s Basketball at Bradley Peoria, Ill. 7 p.m.

12/6-7 Wrestling Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational Las Vegas, Nev.All Day

12/6-7 Men’s And Women’s Track & Field Dakota Classic Fargo, N.D.

12/7 Men’s Basketball vs East Tennessee State Fargo, N.D. 7 p.m.

12/8 Women’s Basketball vs Wisconsin Fargo, N.D. 2 p.m.

12/11 Men’s Basketball at CSU Northridge Los Angeles, Calif. 9 p.m. CT

the ross


Uglem is a native of Northwood, North Dakota, and covers NDSU basketball and football for Bison Report, a division of 247 Sports.

BY ross uglem


The North Dakota State Men’s basketball team kicked off their season in a way very simliar to how they closed the season prior, by paying tribute.



Landon Solberg, a West Fargo 12-year-old finally rested his battle with cancer in September. Landon's parents, Andrea and Travis, raised their children in the same neighborhood as the Richman’s and the support for Landon’s fight became a rallying cry for the community, and for Bison Basketball.

Sometimes people play for themselves, and sometimes people play for reasons that inspire them to be better, and you want to be an inspiration to somebody. Landon was a little bit of my inspiration, how hard he fought. He never gave up, so that empowered me every game to wear the Landon’s Light shirt to let HIM know that we were going to fight every day,” said NDSU senior Tyson Ward. North Dakota State brings back most of the key producers from their Summit League Championship team a season ago. The Bison will be led by seniors Tyson Ward and Vinnie Shahid. Both players are preseason allleague selections.

Landon Solberg was a special young man who continues to inspire a rising Bison Basketball team.

This comes in concert with significant turnover in the Summit League. Long-time Bison antagonists Mike Daum (SDSU), Jon Konchar (FW), Trey Burch-Manning (USD), and Mitch Hahn (Omaha) all graduated. David Jenkins, Jr. transferred to UNLV. He transferred to UNLV because former SDSU Coach TJ Otzelberger has taken control of the Runnin’ Rebels. This, of course, comes the season after South Dakota Coach Craig Smith took the head job at Utah State.

“There’s more to the game.

The conference itself is in

North Dakota State tipped off their season by gathering for the starting lineups with wands that lit up blue at the end, and the crowd turned on their smartphone flashlights. Everyone “lit it up for Landon”. Solberg was later named the player of the game for the exhibition win over Dickinson State.

PHOTO BY Nolan P. Schmidt

into the H

ead Coach Dave Richman garnered national attention a season ago for wearing a “Landon’s Light” T-Shirt under the coat of his gameday suits. Richman, who is known for being a sharp dresser, was sending a message and support to one of his neighbors.

a place of transition. Jon Coffman and his Fort Wayne ‘Dons are headed out of town. St. Thomas is likely on their way in from the Twin Cities. Paul Sather is now the head man at the University of North Dakota. North Dakota State is now in a position of strength and a position of stability. Richman, despite being hired in 2014 is now one of the longest-tenured coaches in the league. North Dakota State also has tremendous returning talent. They also have a purpose bigger than basketball. Sure, the Bison have topend talent. They have tremendous depth. They have everything you would

ever want in a mid-major contender. Aside from the senior leadership of Ward and Shahid, Jared Samuelson brings the grit of a four-year walk-on senior. Chris Quayle is also in his final year, and his third year in the program. Juniors Cameron Hunter and Rocky Krueser bring plenty of experience and proven production to the table as well. North Dakota State has four sophomores with superstar potential. Young guns Sam Griesel, Jarius Cook, Tyree Eady and Jaxon Knotek create tremendous matchup problems for opposing defenses.

The Bison possess everything on the court that a team needs to make a run in March. They are talented, they are well-coached and they are experienced. The kicker, though, what might really make them special, is that purpose.

Landon did, and you can find joy in some tough situations, things are going to be pretty good, and you can be thankful for what we have. His life was too short, but Landon set an unbelievable example for us, to live like he lived,” Richman said.

The 2019-20 Herd has a purpose beyond basketball.

Landon Solberg’s fight against cancer ultimately created Landon’s Light foundation, raised awareness for the fight against childhood cancers and brought a community closer together. His message, and most importantly his Light, have the stamp all over Bison Basketball.

“To live like Landon lived. What is specific to live like Landon lived? Live with your Faith, your family, and your friends as your priorities. This world will bring you problems. There’s a lot going on, and there are a lot of tough situations and circumstances. If you live with those priorities, your faith, family and friends like


slaubaugh's Slaubaugh is a native of Bismarck, N.D. and is a proud NDSU graduate.

getting to know the bison

The Summit League favorite Bison are here, and they’re here to stay. So, get to know them a little! Who is the best dressed? Best singer? Best at NBA 2K? Find out below. You’re on the team bus. You’re tired and you want to sleep. But a teammate won’t stop talking. Who would that likely be? Winner: Tyson Ward Others receiving votes: Rocky Kreuser, Odell Wilson IV, Vinnie Shahid

Who is most likely to flip the table over because he’s getting beat badly at a card game? Winner: Tyson Ward Others receiving votes: Odell Wilson IV, Rocky Kreuser, Cameron Hunter, Vinnie Shahid

Notable quotes Cameron Hunter: “Tyson, easily. The dude talks the most on the team. That’s a no-brainer.” Maleeck Harden-Hayes: “Odell for sure. All he does is talk. He doesn’t know when to shut up.”

Notable quotes Tyson Ward: “I don’t like to lose. Losing is for losers.” Cam Hunter: “Rocky Kreuser. When Rocky gets upset, especially in a competitive situation, you don’t want to be around him.”



You need a partner in a 2-on2 basketball game. Who do you pick? Winner: Rocky Kreuser Others receiving votes: Tyree Eady, Cameron Hunter, Jared Samuelson, Vinnie Shahid Notable quotes Cam Hunter: “Jared Samuelson. He’s tough, gritty, lockdown. He can get a bucket. It’s what you need.” Tyson Ward: “Cam Hunter, my roommate. I know my guy got me. He’s got me with nice feeds.”

If you had to switch wardrobes with one of your teammates, who would it be? Winner: Vinnie Shahid Others receiving votes: Sam Griesel, Chris Quayle, Jaxon Knotek Notable quotes Chris Quayle: “Vinnie Shahid. He has all the vans. If you know us, you know we love our vans.” Sam Griesel: “If the size of the clothes wasn’t a thing, Vinnie.” You hear a teammate has been chosen to sing the national anthem that day. Who would it be? Winner: Odell Wilson IV Others receiving votes: Nada! Notable quotes Rocky Kreuser: “Odell. He’s the singer on the team. I don’t know if he’s as good as he thinks he is, but he sings a lot.” Cam Hunter: “Odell. He’s got the vocals of an angel. He’s performed in front of us. He just lets it go and sings like Mariah Carey. Whatever is in his head that day, he’ll let it out.”

PHOTO BY Ryan Workman



In a fight, which teammate do you want to have your back? Winner: Cameron Hunter Others receiving votes: Tyler Witz, Jared Samuelson, Tyree Eady, Rocky Kreuser, Tyson Ward, “Everyone” Notable quotes Jarius Cook: “Cam Hunter. He’s aggressive. He’s a dog.” Jared Samuelson: “Everyone, but if it came down to it, definitely Rocky.” Who would you least like to play in a game of NBA 2K? Winner: Tie - Vinnie Shahid and Tyson Ward Others receiving votes: “Myself” Notable quotes Tyree Eady: “I’m the best player here so I’m not really worried about that. I would bust Maleeck.”

Cam Hunter: “No one, because no one can beat me. If I had to pick someone, I’d go Vinnie or Tyree. Usually, we go over to Vinnie’s house and get it down.” Coaches are late for practice. Who is most likely to just go home? Winner: Cameron Hunter Others receiving votes: Tyson Ward, Odell Wilson IV Notable quotes Maleeck Harden-Hayes: “Cam Hunter. Just seems like that type of guy.” Cam Hunter: “Tyson or Bigs. I feel like if the coaches didn’t show up, they wouldn’t have the patience to just say, ‘Alright I’m out of here.’”

Who is most likely to give the shirt off his back? Winner: Jared Samuelson Others receiving votes: Cameron Hunter, Jaxon Knotek, Everyone Notable quotes Tyree Eady: “Jared Samuelson. He’s the best captain, really thoughtful and most selfless on the team. Everyone loves that kid.” Cam Hunter: “Jaxon Knotek. He’s the most genuine guy and most caring for others.”

have to try his food. He’s like Gordon Ramsay out there. Every time he goes to the dining center, he cooks his own food.” Tyson Ward: “Me. I be whipping it up. Scrambled eggs, pasta, chicken alfredo, the easy stuff.”

There you have it. I always love unveiling the person behind the jersey. This allowed me to do that to a tee. I’m Dan Slaubaugh and this is your Slaubaugh Scoop.

Who is the best cook? Winner: “Myself” Others receiving votes: Tyree Eady, Jarius Cook

Thanks for reading. Have a wonderful November. Go Bison.

Notable quotes Cam Hunter: “Tyree. He cooks mean chicken, you



BY JOSHUA A. SWANSON *Swanson is a native of Maddock, N.D., a proud NDSU alum and a lifelong Bison fan.

FOLLOW @swany8




n early October, I became a dad. My wife, Libby, and I welcomed Maverick into the world and Bison fandom. We’re first time parents, and let me tell you, it's some kind of trip. My tailgating time has been curtailed significantly while my efficiency at changing a full diaper rivals that of a NASCAR pit crew gunning a set of fresh Goodyear radials with lightning-quick speed. Every day is something new, wonderfully new. For example, when driving Maverick around town, I have

It’s the best feeling ever. I also have the best seat in the house for every North Dakota State game. Home or away. Rain or shine. The seat isn’t a sideline pass. It’s not in a suite next to other Bison fans, in the student section or in the media press box. The best seat isn’t even in the stadium. It’s at my house, on the couch, by the end table near the window. It has nothing to do with the new flat screen from Costco mounted above the mantle, or the loaded fridge. It has everything to do with who I’m with and holding during the game, Maverick Swanson, the newest little Bison fan. He joins a long line of enthusiastic and diehard Bison fans, like his great grandparents Jim and Norma, his uncle Justin and aunt Kayla, his cousin Grady, and his grandparents, Pa and Ma Swany. From start to finish, Maverick, or “Mav,” sits with me. From 1993 until this fall, you could count on one hand the number of Bison games at the Fargodome that I wasn’t at. I’ve had season tickets since that 1993 season, I served as ballboy for Rocky Hager and Bob Babich, I've covered games for NDSU’s student newspaper, The Spectrum, and for Bison Illustrated, I talk about the Bison on my radio show, Herd it Hear with Swany on 740AM The Fan, and the Bison Illustrated Podcast, and I'm a fervent and proud supporter of Six Flags Tailgating.

PHOTO BY Bruce Crummy

the best seat in the house

a sense of what it must feel like to be the Secret Service agent driving the president somewhere. My head is on a swivel, man. I’m thinking about routes, eyeballing every vehicle in sight, and if my SUV had police lights and sirens – it doesn’t, not yet anyway – they’d be running full blast.

None of that remotely compares to watching a game with Maverick. I spend as much time watching him sleep as I do watching the game. The outcome doesn’t seem as important as the simple joy of watching the Bison with him. He’s got a green NDSU onesie jersey and a Bison hat that he wears. He can’t understand what I’m saying, of course, because he’s a newborn, and he won’t remember these first few games. But his dad will remember. I’ll never forget these first few games, especially the very first one, a 46-14 homecoming win over Northern Iowa. I’ve been to every FCS national championship in Frisco, the big FBS wins over Minnesota, Kansas State, Iowa State and Iowa, the College GameDays, every single playoff game at the Fargodome, games at Dacotah Field, and epic road wins like the one in Brookings earlier this fall. My favorite Bison game so far, though, at least until the next one, are the ones on the couch with Mav. I’m absolutely beaming. Early in the afternoon, we sit down and flip on KVLY and statewide NBC for the pregame show. We watch Kyle Emanuel show Ryan Gellner how to rush the passer in the end zone, listen to Beth Hoole and Alex Egan talk about the

keys to the game while Libby wonders why Alex’s sports coat is some shade of light green, and settle in for the call by Brian Shawn and Lee Timmerman. It won’t be too long before Maverick knows who the players are, can recite stats, and he’s cheering for “the Rams” just like his old man. It won’t be too long before he’s throwing a football in the tailgating lots and running around with his cousin, Kye. We’ve even worked on our Bison history. Fortunately, through my day job, I took the month of October off – “man-ternity leave” – to be with Mav and Libby, and will be working from home a good part of the days through year-end. That was the best decision I’ve ever made, hands down for so many reasons. Among them, Maverick and I have watched dozens of classic Bison games on DVR and Youtube. When mom is napping, that’s how Mav and dad relax. The first one we watched was last December’s semifinal win over South Dakota State. We’re also watching ESPN’s documentary, “College Football 150: The American Game.”

and for college football, that I got from my dad growing up that I’m now sharing with Maverick. I’m going to be a hot, crying mess when I take Maverick to his first Bison game at the Fargodome with his grandpa. And that’s okay. Maverick will be too young to remember his dad, and probably his grandpa, shedding a few happy tears. I still remember driving with my dad and his friends from Maddock to Fargo for my first ever game at Dacotah Field in November 1990, a quarterfinal win against Cal Poly. I’ll never forget a January day in early 2013, leaping over the railing at Toyota Stadium, and giving my brother a huge bear hug after NDSU beat Sam Houston State – a win we knew would get him a national championship ring, something he grew up dreaming of since we were little kids. Like many of you, being a Bison and NDSU fan has been, and is, a huge part of our family. Now, like many of you, I’ve got the best seat in the house for games – watching the game with Maverick. Everybody up for the kickoff, the march is on!

It’s a love for this university and team, 79

Issuu converts static files into: digital portfolios, online yearbooks, online catalogs, digital photo albums and more. Sign up and create your flipbook.