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UND three-touchdown underdogs against Bowling Green

BOWLING GREEN, Ohio--Vegas oddsmakers are pegging the UND football program as an almost three-touchdown underdog today against Bowling Green. The No. 25-ranked Fighting Hawks, who stumbled in a Week 1 loss at Stony Brook, are taking another annua...

BOWLING GREEN, Ohio-Vegas oddsmakers are pegging the UND football program as an almost three-touchdown underdog today against Bowling Green.

The No. 25-ranked Fighting Hawks, who stumbled in a Week 1 loss at Stony Brook, are taking another annual shot at an FBS opponent. UND faces the Falcons of the Mid-American Conference at 2:30 p.m. on ESPN3 and WDAY'Z Xtra.

UND's 2016 FBS matchup, though, will take on a different feel following the Fighting Hawks' 2015 victory over Wyoming, the program's first FBS victory.

"You can't focus on the FCS or FBS ... none of that really matters," UND quarterback Keaton Studsrud said. "Anything can happen. You have to treat it like any game. We just have to focus on ourselves."

UND lost its first seven FBS matchups after transitioning to the Division I level. But UND handled the Cowboys 24-13 in Laramie in the season opener a year ago.

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"We know that we can play with anyone in the country," UND defensive lineman Drew Greely said. "We have to show up and prepare. The win against Wyoming gives us confidence that FBS or FCS we can beat you on your turf."

UND's best opportunity prior to Wyoming to earn an FBS victory came against a MAC school. In 2010, UND lost 23-17 to Northern Illinois in Dekalb. UND, led by quarterback Jake Landry and wide receiver Greg Hardin, had a few opportunities late in the game to pull off the upset.

Bowling Green, however, has had little trouble with FCS programs. The Falcons haven't played an FCS program since 2014, but Bowling Green went 4-0 against the FCS from 2010-2014, with the average margin of victory at 42.0 points.

"We know this is a huge opportunity for our program to play as hard as we can," UND coach Bubba Schweigert said. "We are going to prepare hard and that's how you gain confidence-by being comfortable with the plan and knowing what you need to do to be successful. You really have to put forth great effort and really stay in it mentally when you play the FBS.

"You have to stay in it as long as you can and compete hard. That's what we're looking to do. We always plan to have a positive result after the game. Our guys will be up for the challenge, and we're looking forward to it."

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