Originally Posted by kingoftheroost
That's very similar to the way I feel about it. I feel like we could beat them on any field, but the timing of playing them -- especially in Fargo -- would be critical. The way we currently have the FCS team we play scheduled, it's basically used as an extra bye week before we play CU. But even if we played NDS for the opening game it would be a dangerous game for us. SHOULD we beat them handily? Absolutely, but we also couldn't afford to go into the game thinking a win for us is a lock, because NDS is a legitimately good team, even if they are an FCS school.
I like the way you said if we win people would say, "Congratulations. You just beat an FCS team," but acknowledged it would also be major news if NDS were to pull off the upset. The same scenario exists when we play any FCS team, but it's far less likely the upset will happen against the likes of Citadel and SC State. The thought of playing a true power from that level (3 consecutive national championships now and several upsets of FBS schools over the years) is simply a way to gauge the confidence level of our fan base, especially when considering the thought of not being in the friendly confines of WB.
My confidence level for out program is higher when we play top 10 teams than it is when we play low-level teams. When we play top 10 teams (road or home) I feel like our players know the importance of the game, and will give 100%. When it's a Troy, or Citadel, I feel like at the start of the game they only give 50%, and it works it's way up to 100% by end of the second quarter.