FARGO — North Dakota State finished its three-day summer football camp on Sunday, June 23, an evaluation gem that is usually followed by several scholarship offers and in some cases commitments. In the case of Hillsboro-Central Valley outside linebacker Oscar Benson, he wasn’t about to wait around and mull an offer from Bison head coach Matt Entz.
Entz made his pitch in his office to Benson with his father, Karl Benson, also present. Oscar called his mother to get her blessing and the deal was done.
“I didn’t know what to expect when I went in there,” Oscar said.
It turned into an easy “yes” answer for him, which made Benson the fourth NDSU commitment from the Fargo-Moorhead area. He joins Fargo Davies safety Ty Satter, Moorhead High defensive lineman Seth Anderson and Ada-Borup offensive lineman Mason Miller.
“It’s kind of cool that if they can find local kids to recruit that they will,” Benson said. “It’s not always super far away and they’ll give the local guys a shot.”
The Bison had six total commitments as of Monday afternoon with safety Tyson Gordon of Omaha Skutt (Neb.) High School and offensive and defensive lineman Jackson Bram of Maryville, Mo., accepting NDSU’s offer.
The 6-foot-3, 175-pound Gordon is a two-sport standout who first had to choose between football and basketball. He held football offers from Northern Iowa, South Dakota State, Youngstown State and Illinois State, according to the Omaha World-Herald newspaper. He had basketball offers from Division II schools Wayne State (Neb.) and Nebraska-Kearney. The 6-4, 220-pound Bram will join former high school teammate and fellow offensive lineman Jalen Sundell on the Bison roster.
Benson said he held offers from Division II schools University of Mary and Bemidji State (Minn.), but had yet to take a visit to either of them.
“If NDSU didn’t work out, I was going to visit them and see what happens,” he said. “But the circumstances said otherwise.”
Benson said NDSU associate head coach Randy Hedberg contacted him after last fall’s narrow 20-18 loss to Langdon Area-Edmore-Munich in the Class 1A state title game at Gate City Bank Field at the Fargodome.
It was a rematch from the previous year when the Burros narrowly defeated the Cardinals. The 6-1, 185-pound Benson is a running back for the Burros but NDSU will put him on the defensive side.
“Things kind of progressed all the way up to this camp,” Benson said. “That’s when I kind of knew that if an offer were to come, that’s when it would come. I worked hard in late spring and early summer to get bigger, stronger and faster for it.”