The ramp up to the 2020 North Dakota State football season begins with a look at the top players the Bison will face this year.
Anytime a new opponent makes their debut in the Fargodome there's a level of curiosity from NDSU fans. Think Charleston Southern, Eastern Washington and Delaware.
North Carolina A&T fits that bill this year and its star player, running back Jah-Maine Martin. Martin is a tremendous player, coming off a record setting season for the Aggies who claimed the Celebration Bowl for the third consecutive season.
Martin is 5-10, 204 pounds and A&T is his second stop. He originally signed with Coastal Carolina out of high school and spent the 2016 season there rushing for 175 yards. He was dismissed from the team before the 2017 season because of some legal issues, signing with A&T before the 2018 season. He rushed for 656 yards and seven touchdowns that year, setting the table for a big junior season.
That was an understatement. Martin ran away from defenders, going for 1,336 yards and a school record 21 touchdowns. A closer look at the numbers is even more impressive. 299 rushing yards against Charleston Southern. 110 yards and two touchdowns on national tv in the 64-44 win over Alcorn State in the Celebration Bowl.
Martin is the next in line of great running backs at A&T. The Chicago Bears Tarik Cohen was a star for the Aggies, a three-time MEAC Offensive Player of the Year that's become a very good back in the National Football League. There were rumors after last season that Martin may leave early for the NFL Draft.
He decided to come back. NDSU fans should be thrilled. A top running back going against the Bison defense makes for a great matchup.