The North Dakota State Bison are headed to the FCS finals once again. NDSU defeated South Dakota State by a score of 44-21 on Friday night behind a dominant second half performance.
The second semifinal game will take place on Saturday at 2 p.m. ET when No. 3 Eastern Washington takes on No. 7 Maine. The national championship will be played at 12 p.m. ET on Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019 on ESPN2.
The Bison scored 30 points in the second half and absolutely gashed the Jackrabbits on the ground. North Dakota State ran for 441 yards and five touchdowns on the evening, as Easton Stick and Bruce Anderson kept the chains moving all night long.
Here's a play-by-play recap of everything you may have missed.
North Dakota State-South Dakota State: Preview
North Dakota State is two wins away from winning the FCS national title for the seventh time in eight years.
But for the Bison to play for another championship, it must beat conference rival South Dakota State for the second time this year. On September 29, North Dakota State barely got by the Jackrabbits, winning 21-17 in the Fargodome. Now the Missouri Valley Football Conference foes return to the Fargodome.
The second meeting has a new twist, as Bison coach Chris Klieman was named the new Kansas State coach. Klieman plans on coaching the Bison through the FCS Playoffs. Current NDSU defensive coordinator Matt Entz has been named the new Bison head coach.
Friday will mark the 109th meeting between the Bison and the Jackrabbits. The series, which goes back to 1903, has NDSU leading 61-42-5 all-time. The two programs most recently met in the playoffs in the 2016 quarterfinals. NDSU won that game, 36-10.
2018 FCS Playoffs: Teams
Of the 24 teams to make the FCS Playoffs, 10 qualify automatically.
Here are the automatic qualifiers:
- Ohio Valley: Jacksonville State
- Patriot: Colgate
- Missouri Valley: North Dakota State
- Pioneer: San Diego
- Big South: Kennesaw State
- Big Sky: Weber State
- CAA: Maine
- Northeast: Duquesne
- Southern: Wofford
- Southland: Nicholls
Here are the Top 8 seeds:
- North Dakota State: 11-0
- Weber State: 9-2
- Eastern Washington: 9-2
- Kennesaw State: 10-1
- South Dakota State: 8-2
- UC Davis: 9-2
- Maine: 8-3
- Colgate: 9-1