It’s getting to be that time of year. Summer workouts are wrapping up and preparations are being made for the start of fall camp. Preseason polls are being released and commitments are continuing to roll in!
The MVFC released their preseason poll this morning and somewhat surprisingly the Hawks were picked 3rd. SDSU was selected to win the league with NDSU coming in 2nd.
The spring season obviously carried some weight with the coaches, media and SID’s. The Hawks finished 4-1 and beat SDSU in the 2nd game of the season.
UND went on to win their first-ever FCS playoff game in convincing fashion 44-10 over Missouri State. The Hawks ended up falling to James Madison in the national quarterfinals.
Another feather in the cap of Bubba Schweigert and staff was the fact they placed eight players on the preseason all-conference team.
Otis Weah – 1st team
Tommy Schuster – 1st Team
Matt Waletzko – 1st Team
Evan Holm – 2nd Team
Devon Krzanowski – 2nd Team
Jaxson Turner – HM
Jordan Canady – HM
Luke Skokna (RS) – HM
Schuster, Weah and Waletzko all being first-team tell you what kind of potential the Hawks have on offense this coming fall. With Garett Maag and Bo Belquist returning at wide receiver UND has the makings of an explosive unit. The evolution of the young offensive lineman will be a major key.
Let’s not forget UND has their most versatile weapon returning from injury in Brock Boltmann & the Brockstar formation.
The Hawks led the MVFC in scoring this past spring with a 29.9 pt/game average.
UND and strength coach Nate Baukol are performing their annual end-of-summer testing this week and will take a few days off before fall camp begins on August 5th. The season opener is September 4th out at Idaho State.
The Bengals were picked 9th in the Big Sky preseason poll but as we all know they have been a major thorn in UND’s side over the years. It will be a tough game to open up with, no doubt.
UND received their 9th commitment to the Class of 2022 this past weekend when Millard West’s Trace Thaden tweeted out his pledge to the Hawks. Thaden is the second tight end in the class joining Haydn Stay.
I want to thank my family, friends and coaches that have been there for me and supported me along the way. I wouldn’t be who I am without you all. I am very excited to announce I will be continuing my athletic and academic career at the University of North Dakota. Go Hawks🟢⚪️ pic.twitter.com/aJtRv8tDlf
— Trace Thaden (@thaden_trace) July 24, 2021
Thaden is a large man, standing 6’7″ and weighing in at 225 pounds. He came up for UND’s flagship camp a few weeks ago and performed well. Thaden is a project, no doubt, but the size he brings to the table cannot be overlooked.
Thaden wasn’t thrown to a whole lot during his junior season but showed nice athleticism at UND’s camp when running routes. He will be a nice edge-setter in the zone running game as having a tall blocker consume the defender negates their vision into the backfield.
We look for the Hawks to try and lock up 2-3 more commits before fall camp gets fully underway. Linebacker, quarterback and offensive line appear to be the priorities at the moment.
Cover photo courtesy of UND Athletics and Russell Hons.