Beavers head to Northern State for NSIC North contest
Friday, October 28, 2011
Beavers head to Northern State for NSIC North contest

Setting the Scene
Date: Saturday, October 29, 2011
Location: Aberdeen, S.D.
Kickoff: 2:30 p.m.
Stadium: Swisher Field
Stadium Capacity/Surface: 6,000/Grass
Local Radio:    WMIS 92.1 The River
Play-by-play: Mark Ricci
Analyst: Ray Ricci
Internet Audio: and
Web cast:

The Game
The Bemidji State University football team (6-2; 5-2 NSIC, 1-2 NSIC North) looks to rebound after suffering its second loss of the season Oct. 22 as it hits the road for a Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference North battle at Northern State University Oct. 29 at 2:30 p.m. at Swisher Field. The Beavers lost on the road to U-Mary by the score of 49-21. The Wolves (2-6; 1-6 NSIC, 1-2 NSIC North) are coming off a 37-6 road loss to then-No. 7 University of Minnesota Duluth Oct. 22.        

The Series
The Beavers and Wolves have been doing battle since 1957 with BSU holding a small series advantage 17-16-1. The Beavers are on a six-game winning streak against NSU and have outscored the Wolves 219-116 during the run. Northern State leads at home 10-6 all-time. The last time BSU lost to NSU was in Aberdeen Oct. 23, 2004 by the score 34-31. More series information can be found on page 6.

The Coaches
Bemidji State: Jeff Tesch is in his 16th season roaming the sidelines at Bemidji State. He has posted an overall record of 104-66 (.612), which includes a 79-49 (.617) mark in NSIC tilts. In 16 seasons, Tesch has established BSU standards for games coached (170), victories (104), career winning percentage (.612) and conference wins (79). He secured his 100th victory at BSU in grand fashion with a 30-27 overtime upset road victory at then-No. 16 Augustana College Sept. 10, 2011. Prior to his tenure at BSU, Tesch, a two-time NSIC Coach of the Year (1999 and 2006), spent 12 years as an assistant at North Dakota, two on the staff of Central Missouri and one season at Montana State. More Tesch on page 7.

Northern State: The 26th football coach in Wolves football history, Tom Dosh, enters his second year at the helm of the Wolves and 19th year of collegiate coaching. NSU went 2-9 in his first season as head coach. Prior to his hiring, Dosch had spent two seasons at Southern Illinois University, overseeing the inside linebackers and special teams for the Salukies, who won the Missouri Valley Conference title both years. and qualified for the NCAA Division I-Football Championship Sub-Division (FCS) playoffs A 1992 graduate of Dickinson State University, Dosch was a 4-year letter-winner and a 2-year starter and is a current member of the school’s Hall of Fame. Dosch’s teams – as a player, head or assistant coach – have won 12 conference championships and advanced to the national playoffs 14 times, including two national title games.  

The Program
Bemidji State’s all-time record is 321-400-24 (.447) dating back to 1926, which includes a 181-251-9 (.421) mark in NSIC play. The Beavers own five conference titles (1947, 50, 57, 59 and 2006) and count the 2006 Mineral Water Bowl as their first  post-season appearance. Under the direction of Tesch, BSU has posted winning records in 11 of the last 12 years and have registered nine consecutive winning home campaigns.

Quick Count
• Junior tight end Brian Leonhardt has 995 career receiving yards, just shy of the 1,000 yards plateau. If he surpasses the century mark he will be the second BSU tight end to accomplish the feat since 1971. Bruce Ecklund (TE, 1980-83) posted 1,542 career yards.
• BSU has recorded 28 points and 308 yards in eight opening drives this season. On the flip side, the Beaver defense has allowed 10 points and 220 yards on opponent’s first drive.
• After the opening drive, the Beavers continue to dominate the first quarter, posting 77 points in the opening frame and allowing just 13.
• BSU has scored 22 touchdowns and one field goal on drives more than 60 yards.
• The Beavers have been penalized the least out of any team in the NSIC (38), and are second in least penalty yards per game (330 yards, 41.2 yards per game).
• BSU is 6-for-9 (66.7%) on fourth downs this season to rank second in the league.
• The Beavers are third in the NSIC in time of possession, averaging 31:39 per contest.
• The BSU ground game ranks third in the NSIC and 11th in the nation, averaging 246.0 yards per contest; while the BSU defense ranks first in the league and 5th in the nation in rush defense, allowing 83.5 yards per game.
• Junior Dustin Kroeplin ranks seventh in the NSIC and T-54th in the nation in rushing with 83.0 yards per game. He has eight rushing touchdowns to tie for the third most in the league among running backs.
• The Beavers are 3-1 this season when Kroeplin rushes for a touchdown and are 16-2 in his three-year career when he finds the end zone from the backfield.
• Senior safety Brody Scheff is tops in the NSIC and tied for eighth in the nation with five interceptions this season. His partner in crime is Dusty Sluzewicz, who is solo second in the league in picks with four. Scheff leads the team and ranks 11th in the NSIC in tackles with 65.
• The team has 13 interceptions this season to rank first in the league.
• The ‘Gang Green’ defense continues to dominate in 2011, ranking in the top 25 nationally in rush defense and scoring defense (11th, 17.0 pts/gm).
• BSU is second in the conference and T-18th in the nation in turnover margin with a +.88 mark per game. The Beavers are second in the league and T-9th in the nation in sacks allowed (0.88 sacks allowed/game). BSU is 12th in net punting (37.4 yds/game), sitting third in the NSIC. BSU punter Jesse Sundby is second in the NSIC and 29th in the nation in punting average (40.8 yds/punt).
• Senior Cory Immerman (OL) and junior Brian Leonhardt (TE) were named to the Consensus Draft Services 2011 Preseason All-America Honorable Mention Football Team.
• BSU returned nine all-conference players to the 2011 roster.