Duluth, MN (Northland's NewsCenter) --- The UMD Bulldogs football team will hit the field this Saturday night with the goal to repeat as Division II NCAA national champions for the first time in program history.
The Bulldogs won the title in 2010, marking their second national championship in three seasons, and now will again be charged with defending their title.
UMD loses several offensive weapons from last year's squad, including three-time All American running back Isaac Odim, but head coach Bob Nielson said he hopes that will be offset by returning all five starters on the offensive line.
The Bulldogs also return junior quarterback Chase Vogler, named the NSIC Preseason Offensive Player of the Year, and senior linebacker Rob Huberty, named the NSIC Preseason Defensive Player of the Year.
UMD opens the season Saturday, September 3 against Augustana, and Nielson knows it'll be a tough road as always for the Bulldogs.
"I think our players are prepared for us to be the team circled on everybody's schedule," Nielson said, "and what that does is force you to play your best football week in and week out. You can't take a week off."
ST. SCHOLASTICA FOOTBALL TO REPORT SATURDAY, PRACTICE SUNDAY
The St. Scholastica Saints football team is due to report to campus Saturday afternoon, with the first practice of the fall set for Sunday.
The Saints are coming off the best season in the program's short history, going (7-3) in 2010 with a (5-2) record in the Upper Midwest Athletic Conference (UMAC).
St. Scholastica's football team is entering only its fourth year of existence, meaning the freshman from the inaugural season will be seniors in 2011.
The Saints open the season Saturday, August 3 on the road against Lawrence University.
Posted by Zach Schneider