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Jeff Kolpack, Published January 04 2011

College football: CB Williams opts to stick with football

One of the best – if not the best – athlete on the North Dakota State campus, will apparently stick to one sport this season.

Marcus Williams, a cornerback for the Bison football team, did not join the basketball team over the Christmas break.

A two-sport star in high school at Hopkins, Minn., Williams enrolled at NDSU with the thought of playing both. Then again, NDSU’s football season ran into the middle of December with a trip to the Division I Football Championship Subdivision quarterfinals.

Meanwhile, the Bison basketball team struggled on the road losing three straight at Fresno State, Missouri-Kansas City and Southern Utah.

“I know this: It would be real easy for me to say ‘we need this’ or ‘we need that’ after this weekend,” said head coach Saul Phillips. “We didn’t play well. But up until that point, our work was good.”

Phillips said he’s still open to Williams joining the basketball team. But he hasn’t heard from either Williams or head football coach Craig Bohl.

“From the beginning, it’s been an issue between coach Bohl and him,” Phillips said. “But I will absolutely not recruit off another coach’s roster on our campus. I will not do that.”

Bohl could not be reached for comment on Monday.

Williams, a freshman, developed into one of NDSU’s best defensive backs over the course of the season. He was second on the team with four interceptions and was the only player in double figures with 12 pass breakups.

He was named to the Missouri Valley Football Conference all-newcomer team.

Inforum searchword: Bison football

Forum reporter Jeff Kolpack can be heard on the Saturday Morning Sports Show, 9-11 a.m. on WDAY-AM (970).

He can be reached at

(701) 241-5546.

Kolpack’s NDSU media blog can be found at www.areavoices.com/bisonmedia