You would think by now that FBS programs would have learned to avoid scheduling a game against North Dakota State, but Arizona is the latest program to dare to schedule the Bison. Arizona will host North Dakota State on September 17, 2022.
Arizona is the third Pac-12 school on a future football schedule. North Dakota state previously had games scheduled against Oregon (2020) and Colorado (2024).
North Dakota State has won six straight games against FBS opponents spanning from 2010 through 2016. Victims along the way have included Kansas, Minnesota, Colorado State, Kansas State, Iowa State and Iowa. North Dakota State is not currently scheduled to face another FBS opponent until meeting Oregon on the road in 2020, and the future games against Arizona and Colorado are the only other games against FBS opponents currently lined up.
Of course, scheduling North Dakota State may be more acceptable to some compared to some other FCS programs or even some FBS opponents right now given the recent string of success, but how good will the Bison be by the time these games against FBS opponents come up? Who knows for sure. The Bison were just blocked from winning a national championship last season, but they will likely remain a national contender at the FCS level in 2017.
Unlike the ACC, Big 12, Big Ten and SEC, the Pac-12 does not have a scheduling requirement for teams to play another power conference opponent each season. The conference also does not restrict its members from scheduling FCS opponents, as the Big Ten has recently moved in the direction of doing. Arizona will play one FCS opponent each of the next four seasons according to the current schedule (NAU in 2017, 2019; Southern Utah in 2018; Portland State in 2020).