Tradition • Character • Service

Tradition • Character • Service

Thursday, September 08, 2005 3 NW Region Notebook Northwest Region Correspondent
September 7, 2005

When the North Central Conference lost perennial powers Northern Colorado and North Dakota State to Division I a couple of years ago, the nay Sayers were complaining that the league would never be the same.

They were right-- the NCC might be even stronger now.

With the stunningly quick turnarounds of Minnesota State and South Dakota from conference doormats to teams on the cusp of becoming regional and national powers, the NCC can this year boast of having five of its seven teams capable of playing with anyone in the country. When you also consider that the team picked to finish sixth in the league (Minnesota-Duluth) has a pair of wins over teams expected to finish near the top of their respective conferences, it becomes apparent why the league race this season could be one of the best in history.

Last week NCC teams went 7-0 in non-conference play with a pair of very impressive wins by Nebraska-Omaha (28-23 over a Top 5 Northwest Missouri State team) and North Dakota (41-7 over national semifinalist West Chester). The conference will have to prove its mettle again this week as four of the seven teams face stiff competition on the road.

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