CEDAR FALLS, Iowa (AP) — Cam Miller accounted for three touchdowns and Cole Payton scored on runs of 60 and 23 yards to help FCS No. 9 North Dakota State beat Northern Iowa 48-27 on Saturday night.
The win likely seals an at-large berth into the playoffs. North Dakota State (8-3, 5-3 Missouri Valley Conference) has made 13 straight playoff appearances, the third-longest streak in history.
Miller threw a 36-yard touchdown pass to Eli Green to open the scoring, ran for a 1-yard score to make it 14-3 at the end of the first quarter and hit RaJa Nelson for a 15-yard TD to make it 21-3 with 13:51 to play in the first half.
Cole Wisniewski picked off a pass at the 25, raced up the left sideline to the other 20 where he cut inside and then broke three would-be tackles on his way to the end zone for a 75-yard pick-6 that made it 48-20 with 11:59 remaining in the game.
Miller finished 17-of-22 passing for 238 yards with two touchdowns and Nelson finished with six receptions for 113 yards.
Theo Day passed for 342 yards and two touchdowns with four interceptions — two by Oscar Benson — for Northern Iowa (6-5, 5-3).
The Panthers season is likely over.