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North Dakota State was listed at No. 3 in Athlon Sports 2012 College Football Preview magazine NCAA Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) preseason top 25.
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Courtesy: Bob Nelson
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NDSU No. 3 in Athlon Sports 2012 College Football Preview FCS Preseason Top 25

Courtesy: NDSU Athletic Media Relations
Release: July 23, 2012

NASHVILLE, Tenn.—North Dakota State was listed at No. 3 in Athlon Sports 2012 College Football Preview magazine NCAA Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) preseason top 25.

The Bison were one of five Missouri Valley Football Conference teams listed in the top 25 which included No. 9 Youngstown State, No. 14 Indiana State, No. 15 Illinois State, and No. 20 Northern Iowa.

The Athlon Sports capsule on North Dakota State said “Coach Craig Bohl is confident that the loss of 11 starters won’t prevent the reigning national champs from challenging for back-to-back titles. Junior cornerback Marcus Williams was electrifying for last year’s stingiest defense in the FCS (12.7 ppg). Third-year quarterback Brock Jensen keeps improving for an offense that will be run-heavy behind 1,000-yard back Sam Ojuri.”  

Williams was named to Athlon Sports Preseason FCS All-America team. NDSU is one of four Valley Football teams projected by Athlon Sports as FCS playoff qualifiers. The Bison are picked to be the MVFC champs and are joined by Illinois State, Indiana State, and Youngstown State in the playoff field.

North Dakota State won the program’s first NCAA Division I Football Championship with a 17-6 win over Sam Houston State on Jan. 7 and also claimed the program's first Missouri Valley Football Conference title. The Bison were 14-1 overall and 7-1 in MVFC.

The Bison open the 2012 season against Robert Morris at 6 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 1, at Gate City Bank Field at the Fargodome.

Athlon Sports Preseason Top 25

1. Sam Houston State

2. Georgia Southern

3. North Dakota State

4. Montana State

5. James Madison

6. Old Dominion

7. Towson

8. Appalachian State

9. Youngstown State

10. New Hampshire

11. Delaware

12. Eastern Washington

13. Jacksonville State

14. Indiana State

15. Illinois State

16. Stony Brook

17. Montana

18. Eastern Kentucky

19. Wofford

20. Northern Iowa

21. Murray State

22. Harvard

23. Stephen F. Austin

24. Chattanooga

25. Lehigh

FCS All-America Team


QB Brad Sorensen, Southern Utah

RB Shakir Bell, Indiana State

RB Tim Flanders, Sam Houston State

WR Nicholas Edwards, Eastern Washington

WR Aaron Mellette, Elon

TE Colin Anderson, Furman

C Dan Shirey, Villanova

G Malcolm Boyd, Liberty

G Earl Wotford, James Madison

T Aaron Adams, Eastern Kentucky

T Blake Matthews, Norfolk State



DE Blake Oliaro, San Diego

DE Ben Obaseki, Indiana State

DT Zach Minter, Montana State

DT Brent Russell, Georgia Southern

LB Matt Evans, New Hampshire

LB Blake Peiffer, Southeast Missouri State

LB Keith Pough, Howard

CB Demetrius McCray, Appalachian State

CB Marcus Williams, North Dakota State

S Kejuan Riley, Alabama State

S Darnell Taylor, Sam Houston State


K Zach Brown, Portland State

P Jonathan Plisco, Old Dominion

KR Kevin Fogg, Liberty

PR Darius Carey, McNeese State

AP Richard Sincere, Sam Houston State

Projected FCS Playoff Qualifiers

Appalachian State (at-large)

Bethune-Cookman (MEAC champ)

Bryant (Northeast champ)

Delaware (at-large)

Eastern Washington (at-large)

Georgia Southern (Southern champ)

Illinois State (at-large)

Indiana State (at-large)

Jacksonville State (Ohio Valley champ)

James Madison (CAA champ)

Lehigh (Patriot champ)

Montana State (Big Sky champ)

Montana (at-large)

New Hampshire (at-large)

North Dakota State (Missouri Valley champ)

Old Dominion (at-large)

Sam Houston State (Southland champ)

Stony Brook (Big South Champ)

Towson (at-large)

Youngstown State (at-large)

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