On the Field: Northern State football prepares for new season on new field

KELOLAND.com Original

ABERDEEN, S.D. (KELO) — After 4 years of planning followed by construction, Northern State University has taken ownership of their new brand new stadium.

Head coach, Mike Schmidt, saw his first season cancelled due to COVID-19 in 2020 and a year later, Schmidt and the Wolves are eager to return to action in their new stadium.

Dacotah Bank Stadium – Home Side Grandstand

“Well from when I interviewed here, to watching the first beams go up, to watching the turf come in, every point of this has been ten times than I could’ve even imagined. It’s as spectacular of a setting in division two football as you’re going to find,” Northern State head coach Mike Schmidt said.

Construction is coming to and end at Dacotah Bank Stadium, but the facility has already contributed to the team’s success.

Click the video player above to see a video tour of the new Northern State football complex

“The facility is getting recruits in the door, without a doubt. It’s getting people from all over the country,” Schmidt said. “This past year, we signed kids from 18 different states, just in this one class and so, seeing the Northern State footprint expand throughout the entire country, not just this region of the country, but really from coast to coast has been a lot of fun and that’s because of this commitment.”

The Daktronics Scoreboard is 50 feet tall x 80 feet wide, or over 4,000 square feet

This near $40 million project began in the spring of 2020 and after 15 months of construction, the team is excited to get out on the field.

“I think our excitement level is pretty high right now. It better be! I think what we’re showing here is the community and university is putting its’ money where its’ mouth is at, to say we want to be a premier program in division two football,” Schmidt said.

The university took ownership on Wednesday and the team will begin practice on Monday, in preparation for their first home game in just 38 days.

The new locker rooms are connected to the Barnett Center and located on the north end of the stadium

“Pretty exhilarating to get out and run out onto this field for the first time in front of fans. I can’t really over state how excited we are for that and what that feeling is,” Schmidt said. “Now I’m at the point where I’ve been excited about it for months and months, and now I’m at the point where we’re going to just lock in and focus on winning the games.”

Northern State opens their season at Minnesota State Mankato on September 2. They’ll host SMSU on September 11.

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