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Hype building for No. 17 UND football vs. Weber State on Saturday

GRAND FORKS -- The University of North Dakota football program received its highest national ranking in Division I history Monday and its head coach declared its next game is the biggest in his tenure.

GRAND FORKS - The University of North Dakota football program received its highest national ranking in Division I history Monday and its head coach declared its next game is the biggest in his tenure.

The hype is building for UND's game Saturday at noon against Weber State at the Alerus Center.

UND, which has won six-straight games and is ranked No. 17 in the latest STATS FCS media poll, is undefeated in Big Sky Conference at 5-0. Weber State is also undefeated in league play at 4-0.

UND also was ranked No. 12 in the coaches poll.

"This is the biggest game since we've been here," said Schweigert, who is in his third season as head coach of the Fighting Hawks. "Both teams are in a good position, so we hope to have a great crowd and great atmosphere."

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UND, 6-2 overall, has won five straight at home dating back to last season and is 11-3 at the Alerus under Schweigert. UND also has won its past eight Big Sky games, dating back to last season.

With 10,506 fans at the Alerus for UND's win over Southern Utah two weeks ago, UND has surpassed 10,000 fans in all three home games. The last time UND had at least 10,000 fans for three-straight games was 2008.

"I think it's going to be great," UND linebacker Connor O'Brien said of the anticipated atmosphere. "We've had some good crowds. This is what we want. We want to play in big games at the end of the season."
Weber State will come to Grand Forks with plenty of momentum. The Wildcats scored 23 unanswered points in the fourth quarter last Saturday to nip Southern Utah 37-36.

Weber is 4-0 in league play for the first time since 2008. The Wildcats started 6-0 that season en route to sharing the Big Sky crown with Montana State.

Weber State rallied from a 14-point, fourth-quarter deficit to beat UND 25-24 last season in Ogden, Utah.

"I'd be lying if I said this wasn't a big game," UND quarterback Keaton Studsrud said.

Related Topics: UND SPORTSFOOTBALL
Miller has covered sports at the Grand Forks Herald since 2004 and was the state sportswriter of the year in 2019.

His primary beat is UND football but also reports on a variety of UND sports and local preps.

He can be reached at (701) 780-1121, tmiller@gfherald.com or on Twitter at @tommillergf.
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