North Dakota State returns to Frisco, Texas for the seventh time this January as the Bison will go for history, attempting to become the first FCS program to win seven national championships. Over the next ten days, we’ll look back at the ten biggest moments NDSU has had in its previous six title game appearances.
NUMBER SIX, 2014 FCS Championship Game: North Dakota State met Towson for the championship to conclude the 2013 season as the Bison attempted to match Appalachian State with a third straight national championship. The game was tied at 7 in the second quarter as the Tigers were holding their own with the unbeaten Bison.
Towson had the ball midway thru the second quarter and drove the ball to the Bison 24, when Tigers head coach Rob Ambrose made an interesting decision. It was 4th and seven and Ambrose sent out DJ Soven to attempt a 41 yard field goal. The weather was perfect that day, not a cloud in the sky, that’s not what made the decision interesting. What made it interesting was that the field was disintegrating at Toyota Stadium that day. North Texas had a late freeze and the re-sodding of the field didn’t take, which created crater-sized divots during the game.
Soven’s field goal attempt never got off the ground as junior Colten Heagle blew thru to block the kick and fellow junior Kyle Emanuel scooped up the ball and took off down the near sideline, the same sideline two years earlier where Travis Beck returned an interception for a near touchdown. Emanuel returned the blocked kick 59 yards down to the Towson five to the thrill of a huge Bison crowd. On the next play, Ryan Smith ran in a jet sweep for a touchdown and NDSU never trailed after that. In fact the momentum never swung back to Towson. On the Tigers next possession, quarterback Peter Athens was intercepted by sophomore CJ Smith, who returned the pick out to the Towson 43. Brock Jensen hit Zach Vraa on a touchdown pass and NDSU took a 21-7 halftime lead en route to a 35-7 win.