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Senior offensive lineman Darren DeNeui is ready to get his senior season started.
UND Football #BrickByBrick: Day 11
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Updated: Thursday 08/11/2013 20:37:53 (ET)
by UNDsports.com
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Each day of fall camp, the staff at UNDSports.com will put together a daily report and feature a student-athlete in its #BrickByBrick countdown. Stay tuned to the official website, Instagram (UNDFootball) and Twitter (@UNDFootball) for all the up-to-date information leading up to the season opener vs. Valparaiso on Aug. 29.

COUNTDOWN TO KICKOFF: 18 Days

2013 Media Day Booklet 
(contains roster, depth chart, bios, 2012 stats)

Daily Report
 
After eight straight days of practice and going "live" for the first time at the tail end of Saturday's morning session, the North Dakota football team used Sunday for a day of rest. Well, for their legs anyway. The team did eat a brunch together at Wilkerson Hall and go through some meetings before spending the afternoon watching a movie in East Grand Forks with the coaches and some support staff.  

What's on tap for Monday
After a day off from the turf at Memorial Stadium, the North Dakota football team will be right back at it on Monday morning for session No. 11 of fall camp.

Student-Athlete Spotlight: No. 76 Darren DeNeui
Senior offensive lineman Darren DeNeui can lay claim to at least two distinct features that no other player on UND's 95-man roster can. At six-foot-eight, he is the tallest player on the squad and, he is also the only South Dakotan to play for the Green and White.  

DeNeui does not take much ribbing for the first because he also carries over 300 pounds along with his tall frame, but he does catch some flack for the second.

"The guys give me a hard time that there is a reason they won't add any more South Dakotans to the team, but it's all in good fun," DeNeui said.

Growing up in Chancellor, S.D., which is located between both Division I schools in his home state (South Dakota and South Dakota State), it seemed like a natural fit for a lineman as skilled and big as DeNeui to end up at one of those schools, but it did not work out that way.

"I've never really been a fan of USD and SDSU was recruiting me as much as UND was, but when it came down to the nitty gritty, SDSU stopped showing me as much attention and I came up here and felt the love," DeNeui said of his decision to play his college football outside of South Dakota.

After redshirting during his first season in Grand Forks, DeNeui has been a fixture at one of the tackle spots ever since. He played in nine games as a reserve in 2010 when he was a redshirt freshman before taking over a starting role at left tackle for UND's 2011 Co-Great West Championship team.

He started the first nine games of the 2012 season before a foot injury sidelined him for the final two contests. DeNeui missed spring practices, but was able to rehab and get his foot back to normal leading up to fall camp. "I'm feeling healthy," he said. "I rehabbed all winter long and got my foot back to 100 percent, so I'm ready to go."

DeNeui plays with a bit of a mean streak and there is no faulting him for that. He usually towers over opposing defensive lineman and it's been that way for as long as he can remember. It's just that the edge he plays with took him a while to develop.

"I've always been big for my age," DeNeui added. "I was always usually about a head taller than everyone else in my grade." 

He got his start playing football in third grade, but it took him a while to become enamored with the sport. "My first year I was a big softie out there. In South Dakota Junior Football, they have these players called ringers and we were not allowed to touch the ball or even get in a two-point stance.

"After that year, I was kind of forced to go out again, but I fell in love with it."

UND is thankful he did. DeNeui and classmate Joe Kleason will anchor the tackle spots on this year's line and both bring the most experience to an offensive line that should be a team strength in 2013. It's a responsibility that DeNeui takes seriously.

"The responsibility I'm carrying playing tackle, is a lot of times you are out on an island, and, if you screw up on a play, you're getting the zoom in on you. And, it's always the lineman's fault if you the quarterback eats the dirt," DeNeui said. "The responsibility I carry is keeping the quarterback clean."

This season that signal caller will be new to the fold as UND has five quarterbacks on the roster and none have thrown a pass in college yet. That does not phase DeNeui, who wants to have a solid enough of a season to garner some looks at professional football. That's not his focus, however, entering his final campaign. That is on winning and the big, six-foot-eight tower is going to do all he can to make sure UND piles up the W's in 2013.

Fall Camp Schedule

Date Times (Practice #)
Sat., Aug. 3                   9:15 a.m. (1)
Sun, Aug. 4 9:15 a.m. (2)
Mon., Aug. 5 9:15 a.m. (3)
Tues., Aug. 6 9:15 a.m. (4)
Wed., Aug. 7 9:15 a.m. (5)
Thur., Aug. 8 9:15 a.m. (6)
  3:15 p.m. (7)
Fri., Aug. 9 9:15 a.m. (8)
Sat., Aug. 10 9:15 a.m. (9)
  3:15 p.m. (10)
Mon., Aug. 12 9:15 a.m. (11)
Tues., Aug. 13 9:15 a.m. (12)
  3:15 p.m. (13)
Wed., Aug. 14 9:15 a.m. (14)
Thurs. Aug. 15 9:15 a.m. (15)
  3:15 p.m. (16)
Fri., Aug. 16 9:15 a.m. (17)
Sat., Aug. 17 9:15 a.m. (18)
  3:15 p.m. (19)
Mon., Aug. 19 9:15 a.m. (20)
Tues., Aug. 20 9:15 a.m. (21)
  3:15 p.m. (22)
Wed., Aug. 21 9:15 a.m. (23)
Thur., Aug. 22 9:15 a.m. (24)*
Fri., Aug. 23 9:15 a.m. (25)*
Sun., Aug. 25 3:15 p.m. (26)*
Mon., Aug. 26 2:30 p.m. (27)*
Tues., Aug. 27 3:25 p.m. (28)*
Wed., Aug. 28 4 p.m. (29)*

* All practices will be at Memorial Stadium except Aug. 24-28* (Alerus Center)

Season Tickets
Starting at $75 per seat, season tickets for UND’s 2013 football season are now available. The seven-game home schedule is the best of the DI era and features matchups with four preseason top 10 teams: South Dakota State, Montana, Montana State, and Eastern Washington. Fans can save over 50 percent off single-game ticket prices by reserving your season tickets today. Place your orders by visiting UNDsports.com or calling 701-777-4582.

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