UND releases 2019 football schedule
Pat Sweeney | Feb 15, 2019 AT 7:20 am
Tasked with what might be the toughest schedule since moving to Division I in 2008, North Dakota head football coach Bubba Schweigert and University of North Dakota athletic department officials have announced the 11-game slate for the 2019 season.
The schedule, which features contests against four opponents who reached the NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) playoffs a season ago, see the Fighting Hawks battle six teams at home during the regular season for the first time since 2014 and travel outside the state of North Dakota only a tetrad of weekends.
UND begins its 125th season of collegiate football at home for the second straight year; this time hosting Drake on Aug. 31 from the Alerus Center. The Fighting Hawks and Bulldogs will meet for the third time on the gridiron, with North Dakota claiming the previous two matchups in 2011 (16-0) and 2015 (21-18). This will mark the first time UND has opened at home in back-to-back years since 2011-2013 when it happened three consecutive seasons.
The following week, North Dakota makes the 75-mile drive down I-29 for the 111th all-time meeting vs. North Dakota State on Sept. 7 in Fargo. UND will be gunning for its fourth win in the last five showdowns between the two rivals as the pair will become conference mates in 2020 when the Hawks join the Missouri Valley Football Conference. UND owns a 28-24-1 record against the Bison when playing in the state’s largest city.
North Dakota returns home to face another traditional power on Sept. 14 as Sam Houston State makes its first trip to Grand Forks in program history. Last season, the Fighting Hawks stunned the then-No. 4/5 Bearkats, 24-23, on an 8-yard, fourth down touchdown grab by Noah Wanzek with just 4:44 remaining to snap the FCS’ longest active home winning streak. The fourth-ranked ‘Kats were the highest-ranked team that UND has defeated in its DI history.
After a week off, UND hits the road for three of its next four contests; closing the month of September with a tilt against FCS runner-up Eastern Washington on Sept. 28 in Cheney, Wash. Despite being conference foes since 2012, this will mark only the third trip to “The Inferno” for UND, having fallen in both of its previous meetings by a combined 109-20 score.
The Fighting Hawks return home for a quick one-game homestand vs. UC Davis on Oct. 5 in the first home showdown against the Aggies since 2014. Following that, UND will look to avenge a 25-21 Potato Bowl and Homecoming loss last season to Idaho State on Oct. 12 in Pocatello. The green and white have enjoyed its trips to Holt Arena over the years, winning all four contests since 1965. UND closes out the tough road stretch in sunny California on Oct. 19 at Cal Poly as the Hawks will aim for their third straight win over the Mustangs.
North Dakota closes the season with three of its final four games in the friendly confines of the Alerus Center, beginning with a contest vs. Montana State on Oct. 26. Last year marked the first time since 2011 that the Fighting Hawks and Bobcats did not meet, as UND has claimed two of the last three games between the foes.
The month of November begins with an open week for UND before closing the road portion of the schedule in Ogden, Utah vs. Weber State on Nov. 9. The fourth-and-final contest against a playoff participant a year ago, the then-No. 4 Wildcats held off the Hawks in a wild, 35-30, game last season in the Alerus Center.
Northern Colorado takes its annual place on the schedule on Nov. 16 in Grand Forks as the Bears and Hawks are set to dual for the ninth straight year in the penultimate tilt on the regular season schedule. North Dakota ran wild on the Bears last season, accumulating 351 yards on the ground in a 38-13 triumph. UND has owned UNC since moving to DI, winning seven of the eight meetings, including six straight.
UND closes the regular season at home vs. Southern Utah on Nov. 23 as North Dakota will look to make it three straight wins inside the Alerus Center vs. the T-Birds. The two teams did not matchup in 2018 for only the second time since 2007.
Kickoff times, broadcast coverage, and the promotional schedule will be released at a later date.
2019 North Dakota Football Schedule
Aug. 31 DRAKE
Sept. 7 at North Dakota State
Sept. 14 SAM HOUSTON STATE
Sept. 28 at Eastern Washington
Oct. 5 UC DAVIS
Oct. 12 at Idaho State
Oct. 19 at Cal Poly
Oct. 26 MONTANA STATE
Nov. 9 at Weber State
Nov. 16 NORTHERN COLORADO
Nov. 23 SOUTHERN UTAH