North Dakota State University football fans don't have to wait for new apparel celebrating the team's second straight national championship.
T-shirts, long-sleeved shirts, sweat shirts and hoodies marking NDSU's second NCAA Football Championship Subdivision title were on the racks in Fargo stores on Sunday, just a day after the team beat Sam Houston State 39-13 to retain the crown the Bison first won a year ago, against the same opponent.
The clothing was made by local vendors right after the Bison won Saturday afternoon in Frisco, Texas, so the items would be ready when Fargo sporting goods stores such as Scheels and Sports City opened Sunday. Scheels had a crew work through the night to get the store ready, and as soon as the doors opened Sunday shoppers began flocking in, event leader Caryn Olson said.
"They'll take whatever we've got," she told KVLY-TV.
Olson told The Forum newspaper that Scheels learned some lessons after last year's rush to get Bison gear, when the championship apparel was put in the front of the store, causing big lines of eager shoppers. The Bison section was moved farther back in the store last February, so the rush on Sunday was more spread out and did not block the main doors or checkout counters.
NDSU senior Rachel Herme was browsing the racks at Sports City in West Acres Mall on Sunday, getting ready to add one more shirt to her green-and-gold Bison collection.
"I didn't realize that they would be out already, so I wasn't really looking for it," she said of the gear celebrating the back-to-back titles.
A broader selection of FCS champion apparel will be hitting the shelves over the coming weeks as more detailed, creative designs that take longer to make and are produced by national vendors start to arrive, Olson told The Forum.
"A back-to-back championship is a pretty special thing — it very rarely happens — and so certainly the back-to-back part of the national championship gear is probably going to be the most important," she told KVLY.