UNI Not Focusing On 'Big Picture'

By Jake Bemis, Reporter


By Grant Burkhardt

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa — The University of Northern Iowa Panthers had the mentality that last week was a “must-win” game and their backs were against the wall.

So with a loss on Saturday at Youngstown State, where does that put them now?

“Evidently, our backs are still against the wall,” Coach Mark Farley said Monday at his weekly news conference. “Every game is big to us, but we found out the effort and time (YSU) put into that football game.”

UNI is 1-3 with no victories against a Division I opponent. And the schedule does not get any easier.

UNI hosts defending FCS national champion North Dakota State on Saturday at 6 p.m.

The two shared the Missouri Valley Football Conference title last fall.

The Panthers need to forget about the past and concentrate on the here and now.

“If you start to look at the big picture, that’s when you forget to play that (game) you’re in,” Farley said. “We need to play the play that we’re in right now.

“I’m not going to look into the future. I’m going to try and deal with North Dakota State.”

The Panthers have lost their three games by a total of 23 points, two of those games coming down to their final drive.

“We just have to finish,” Farley said. “We’ve been in some battles. We’ve just got to finish those games.

“We know what we do works, and we know that we can be successful. We just have to stick to the plan.”

Quarterback Sawyer Kollmorgen earned honorable mention recognition by the College Football Performance Awards, throwing for more than 200 yards for the fourth straight game.

David Johnson also was mentioned after scoring three touchdowns against Youngstown State.

“It’s very unusual for our division,” Farley said of the 6-foot-3, 214-pound Johnson. who has scored in every game.

“We normally get the real speed guys, but to get a guy with size on top of that is very unique to UNI.”

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