Unbeaten Bison Stampede Jackrabbits In FCS Semifinals

Monday, December 10, 2018 11:41 PM UTC

Monday, Dec. 10, 2018 11:41 PM UTC

No team has dominated a gridiron this decade like North Dakota State, and the Bison are favored on the NCAA football odds at home Friday against rival South Dakota State.

<p style="text-align:right"><strong><em>2018 Record: 9-4-1 (+4.75 units</em>)</strong></p><h2 style="text-align:center"><a href="https://www.sportsbookreview.com/betting-odds/college-football/south-dakota-state-jackrabbits-vs-north-dakota-state-bison-3693493/odds/" rel="nofollow" title="Live Game Odds">South Dakota State (12-2 SU, 9-3 ATS) at North Dakota State (13-0 SU, 9-4 ATS)</a></h2><h2 style="text-align:center">Friday, Dec. 14, 8 p.m. ET (ESPN2)</h2><h2 style="text-align:center">Fargodome, Fargo, ND</h2><h2 style="text-align:center"><strong>Free NCAAF Pick:</strong> North Dakota State ATS</h2><h2 style="text-align:center"><strong>Best Line Offered:</strong> <a href="https://www.sportsbookreview.com/Sportsbook/?v=4395&amp;book=5dimes" rel="nofollow" title="Top-Rated Sportsbook">5Dimes</a></h2><p>[/]{"component":"oddswidget", "eventId":3693493, "sportsbooksIds":[19,1096,999991,238,93], "LineTypeId":1, "PeriodTypeId":1}[/]</p><p>It’s an All-Missouri Valley Football Conference clash in one half of semifinals for the Football Championship Subdivison title as longtime rivals South Dakota State and North Dakota State collide in Fargo on Friday. <a href="http://www.sportsbookreview.com/best-sportsbooks/" title="SBR's Top Sports Books">5Dimes</a> has installed the Bison as 7½-point favorites at home over the Jackrabbits, with 51½ for the scoreboard target.</p><h2><strong>How They Got Here</strong></h2><p>North Dakota State earned the right to rep the MVFC with a perfect 8-0 league mark, and an 11-0 overall record landed the Bison the No. 1 seed for the playoffs. They rushed for more than 400 yards in a 52-10 beating of Montana State following a 1st-round bye, then blanked Colgate last Saturday under the Fargodome roof, 35-0. South Dakota State received an at-large bid after a 7-2 regular season that was good enough for the No. 5 seed in the bracket. The Jackrabbits romped past Duquesne, 51-6, as 23½-point chalk on the <a href="https://www.sportsbookreview.com/betting-odds/college-football/" rel="nofollow" title="Live College Football Odds">NCAA football odds</a> board two weeks ago, then picked a road win last Saturday at Kennesaw State with a 27-17 final laying a touchdown.</p><p>[/]{"component": "embedHTML", "code": "&lt;blockquote class=\"twitter-tweet\" data-lang=\"en\"&gt;&lt;p lang=\"en\" dir=\"ltr\"&gt;🚨 PRIME TIME FOOTBALL 🚨&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;The Bison host the Jackrabbits at 7:00 Friday night in a national semifinal on ESPN2. Winner to Frisco.&lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/hashtag/RaiseTheBar?src=hash&amp;amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;#RaiseTheBar&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/hashtag/FCSPlayoffs?src=hash&amp;amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;#FCSPlayoffs&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://t.co/tWGig4pDWc\"&gt;pic.twitter.com/tWGig4pDWc&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p&gt;— NDSU Football (@NDSUfootball) &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/NDSUfootball/status/1071609948415643648?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;December 9, 2018&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/blockquote&gt;\n&lt;script async src=\"https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js\" charset=\"utf-8\"&gt;&lt;/script&gt;\n"}[/]</p><h2><strong>Why North Dakota State Will Win/Cover</strong></h2><p>Nick Saban wishes his Alabama Crimson Tide dominated like Chris Klieman and the Bison have in recent years. Klieman is looking for his fourth title since taking over from Craig Bohl in 2014, and NDSU is seeking its sixth FCS Championship in seven seasons. The Bison have lost just once in their last 27 games and feature the 9th-best rushing offense at the FCSS level averaging over 274 YPG and 2nd-best scoring defense allowing just over 11 points a contest. At betting windows, NDSU has covered its last four as at least a 24-point favorite each game.</p><h2><strong>Why South Dakota State Will Win/Cover</strong></h2><p>That one loss the Bison suffered in the last two seasons? Yep, it was at the hands of the Jackrabbits a year ago in Brookings, SD. That victory in 2017 marked the second in a row for SDSU and John Stiegelmeier, who is now in his 22nd year on the job. South Dakota State is third in the FCS putting up more than 44 points per game and seventh in total offense (490.8 YPG).</p><h2><strong>Common Opponent/Series History</strong></h2><p>When it’s a matchup that’s being played for the 109th time, the most common opponent is the one across the line of scrimmage from one another. The Bison have a 61-42-5 lead in the rivalry after winning the most recent matchup – and 75-pound Dakota Marker trophy that goes with it – at the end of September. They had to rally for the 21-17 decision to keep the Jackrabbits from their 3rd-straight win in the series, the final not enough to cover a -10 NDSU line and well short of a 55½-point total.</p><h2><strong>The Verdict</strong></h2><p>It’s a rivalry game, so we can throw a lot out the window. It’s tough to go undefeated at any level, something South Dakota State prevented North Dakota from accomplishing a second time in the last five years just a season ago. I’m still going with the Bison with my <a href="https://www.sportsbookreview.com/college-football/" title="Free NCAA Football Picks">free college football pick</a>.</p><p> </p>
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