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Augustana game


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I'm sure most of us know the relative struggles the Sioux have had against Augustana over the years. During the period from 1990 to present, UND is 10-4 against Augie, and has had four or five pretty close games in the victories. Considering Augie's overall record during that period of time, it seems to defy logic that they've done as well as they have against the Sioux.

The obvious concerns for this game, aside from the fact that UND hasn't typically played that well against Augie, are that it's the first road game of the year, and that Augie is apparently decent, at least by their standards.

The biggest positive may be that UND now has two ex-Augie coaches and/or players on the staff, so that should be a pretty big benefit. Also, Augie's syle of offense--a lot of short passes--is a lot more common these days so presumably the Sioux defense shouldn't be seeing anything it hasn't faced already this season against both Delta and CW. In fact, Delta St. and even possibly CW both probably have more talent at the skill positions and had only modest success throwing the ball, or at least getting into the endzone.

The fact that Concordia-St. Paul won at Augie earlier this year is also evidence that the Sioux should be able to win this game. Concordia simply isn't very good judging by their blow-out loss at Mankato last week.

Similar to Delta St., Augie has a pretty small front seven, particularly at linebacker where they're only in the 200-pound range. That should make them susceptible to the power running game. However, I would hope that the offense isn't too conservative because if the Vikings start bringing up a safety to stop the run, they need to be made to pay for it with the deep ball to Weber, Johnson, Grossman, et al.

With two other very difficult road games this year, the Sioux really need this one. I'm hoping for an undefeated home schedule and winning at least 2 of 3 on the road. Prediction: UND 31, Augie 13.

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I'm not all that concerned about this game because Augie isn't very good on offense. They were held to under 300 yards total offense against both Southwest Minnesota and Concordia-St. Paul and they'll have to be alot better than that to move the ball against UND. Their offensive line is brand new from a year ago and they don't have the high quality skill position players we're used to seeing.

Defensively they are pretty solid, and like you said, I hope the UND offense doesn't get too conservative. Belmore will be starting again so I hope they turn him loose to throw the ball downfield when the opportunities are there.

You also bring up a good point about Augie's style of offense. Seven or eight years ago they were one of the few teams that UND saw that would spread the field and throw the ball all day. Now it seems like every other team on the schedule runs some form of a spread offense and the Sioux defense does a much better job of containing those types of teams than they did even five years ago.

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In addition to announcing that Belmore will again get the start this week, Dale Lennon mentioned on his radio show last night that Ross Brennan will be playing for the first time this year on Saturday, which should further bolster the defensive line depth. I believe he had some type of foot injury.

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