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Beginning as teammates: Skabo, Liggins, Mehrer, Sease continue football careers at Dickinson State

Press Photo by Royal McGregor From left to right, Dylan Skabo, Jay Liggins, Mitchell Mehrer and Tommy Sease stand after Badlands Bowl practice on Tuesday. Skabo and Mehrer are from Dickinson and Liggins and Sease are from Bismarck High. All four will play for the Dickinson State football team in the fall.

Dylan Skabo, Mitchell Mehrer, Tommy Sease and Jay Liggins are getting their first chance to play together as part of Team North Dakota.

The four will see plenty of each other in college as they will continue their playing career for the Dickinson State football team in the fall.

The Blue Hawks have a total of five recruits — four for Team North Dakota and one for Team Montana — playing in the Badlands Bowl at 6 p.m. Saturday at the Biesiot Activities Center.

“(Sease and Liggins) are good athletes and it’s an honor to be a family with them now,” Mehrer said. “We are going to push each other in the weight room, on the field and we are going to have a lot of fun.”

Skabo and Mehrer are Dickinson High graduates. Sease and Liggins are graduates of Bismarck High. The four have seen a lot of each other over the last three years as the Midgets and Demons are West Region opponents.

All four said it’s special to have DSU well represented at the Badlands Bowl.

“It’s awesome being here with a couple of Dickinson State guys,” Sease said. “It’s really exciting.”

Skabo added: “There are four of us and it’s cool to be able to play with them in this game and then continue through college.”

Liggins and Skabo are also getting to know each other better as the two are roommates during the Badlands Bowl. Liggins is a defensive back and Skabo is a wide receiver. He said being picked to play in the Badlands Bowl is a great honor.

Team North Dakota includes 34 of the best high school players from the state.

“It means my talents haven’t gone unnoticed throughout the season because we get picked by coaches who aren’t even my coaches and guys who I’ve played against and were once my rivals,” Liggins said. “They know the talent I bring to the game and I really enjoy it, because I’ve worked hard.”

With two full days of practice down, Skabo said the team is starting to come together. He knows it will be continually process throughout the week, but he feels confident with where the team stands.

“Monday was really a learning experience,” Skabo said on Tuesday. “Today we are putting it all together and we looked pretty good. We just have to continue that into Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, then come out and play on Saturday.”

Each recruit had their own interesting way of arriving at DSU. Mehrer was the first of the four to commit, Skabo was the last, and Sease and Liggins signed on the same day.

Sease and Liggins consider each other best friends. Liggins came to watch Sease during the 2014 North Dakota Class A state wrestling tournament at the Bismarck Civic Center. Sease and the rest of the Demons went on to win the state title. The two also helped lead Bismarck to a boys Class A state track and field title in the spring.

“Tommy and I are real close,” Liggins said. “After our state football game, it was a tough loss and it felt like we were going to get distant from each other. Now we are going to the same college. We worked together to be part of the Dickinson family.”

When Liggins was deciding on a school, he looked to Sease for advice. Sease told Liggins he was going to sign with DSU. Those were really the only words Liggins needed to hear and he committed to the Blue Hawks.

“I wasn’t really sure if I wanted to commit to Dickinson,” Liggins said. “Then I talked to Tommy and he said he was signing there, so we signed on the same day. It was really exciting.”

Though the game marks the end for a number of high school players, playing at the BAC is far from over for the four new teammates on Team North Dakota.

“I personally think (the BAC) is the best facility in the state of North Dakota,” Sease said. “To be able to play on that and practice on that every day throughout this week and into my college career, it’s huge.”