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Summerville turns it up a notch on game day

Dwight Summerville is a laid-back fellow who takes his time walking between Point A and Point B. At 6-foot-2 and 280 pounds, the North Dakota State junior defensive tackle is a big man with a quiet demeanor.

Dwight Summerville is a laid-back fellow who takes his time walking between Point A and Point B. At 6-foot-2 and 280 pounds, the North Dakota State junior defensive tackle is a big man with a quiet demeanor.

Yet, that was the same Dwight Summerville last Saturday night feverishly chasing Tusculum running backs to the Fargodome sideline. On one play, he rushed the passer, sensed a completion about about eight yards downfield, reversed direction and tackled the receiver.

Somewhere between everyday life and the beginning of football practice or game, Summerville finds a Superman-like phone booth and switches gears.

"Once he gets on the field, he changes his attitude," said defensive end Jamel Thomas. "He'll talk about that. Once you get out there, it's time to change."

Bison defensive line coach Jeff McInerney recruited Summerville from Holmes (Miss.) Community College. McInerney has connections in the area and knows some of the Mississippi junior college coaches.

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At the time he got Summerville to commit to NDSU, it was thought for the sole reason of providing some bulk and strength -- somebody to plug up the middle.

Summerville is doing that -- and then some.

"He's mobile," McInerney said. "We thought he was a very athletic person.

Summerville had six tackles, one quarterback sack and one pass break-up in his Bison debut. He and noseguard Isaac Snell consistently provided a defensive line surge, something NDSU will need Saturday when it plays at the University of Montana.

Perhaps the thought of the mountains surrounding Missoula will provide extra motivation for Summerville. That's what worked at Holmes.

If a player got caught loafing during a game, he had to run up and down a hill near the Holmes practice field, Summerville said. Once, Summerville had to run it eight times.

"It depended on how many 'loafs' you got in a game," Summerville said. "It was punishment work. I figured it was better to run in the game than in practice."

He ran a 4.97-second 40-yard dash in testing last month. It didn't really show until the Tusculum game.

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"A lot of people think I can't run," Summerville said. "I do pretty well for a big guy. I just have to make sure I hustle every play."

Which is what McInerney reiterated, saying, "The challenge for Dwight is to play consistently hard and with a lot of energy every down."

Last week, Summerville got off to an energetic start.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Jeff Kolpack at (701) 241-5546

Jeff would like to dispel the notion he was around when Johannes Gutenberg invented the printing press, but he is on his third decade of reporting with Forum Communications. The son of a reporter and an English teacher, and the brother of a reporter, Jeff has worked at the Jamestown Sun, Bismarck Tribune and since 1990 The Forum, where he's covered North Dakota State athletics since 1995.
Jeff has covered all nine of NDSU's Division I FCS national football titles and has written three books: "Horns Up," "North Dakota Tough" and "Covid Kids." He is the radio host of "The Golf Show with Jeff Kolpack" April through August.
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