The reality of life in the Missouri Valley Football Conference is that there are no "bye weeks." No one is more aware of that than the Coyotes (1-6, 0-4 MVFC), who are hoping to snap a five-game losing streak Saturday at No. 18 Indiana State (6-2, 4-1 MVFC).
As their record indicates, the Sycamores - the fourth top-20 team USD will face this season - are one of the top teams in the league. But that was not always the case. In fact, Indiana State spent the better part of a decade as one of the worst program's in all of FCS football, going 2-54 from 2005 to 2009.
The turnaround actually began in 2007, with the appointment of head coach Trent Miles.
After winning just once in his first two seasons, Miles' team began to show some serious progress. He led the Sycamores to a 6-5 record in 2010 - their first winning season since 1996 - and again in 2011.
As of today, ISU sits tied atop the Valley standings and has already clinched its third consecutive winning season. They've won four straight, including a 17-14 upset over defending national champion and then-No.1 North Dakota State on Sept. 13.
The point is, in the midst of an unusually difficult season, there is hope for USD. A quick glance at past results shows how much closer the Coyotes are than Indiana State was to being competitive at "rock bottom."