Must Win?


Even if South Dakota State does not win its football game on Saturday against Northern Iowa, the sun will still rise on Sunday and kittens will still be cute and Zingers will still be tasty.

BUT... if the Jacks do beat the Panthers, it will be a sunnier, fuzzier, more delicious Sunday AND the Jacks will still have a shot at a spot in the FCS playoffs.

The matchup against UNI is attractive in a very Vanilla Ice, Lindsay Lohan, Lance Armstong fall from grace fashion.

Both teams got off to great starts.

UNI beat Iowa State to open the season and won its first four games but has lost 3 in a row.

SDSU started 3-0, but the Jacks have lost 4 of their last 5 including a 35-21 head-scratcher last week at Missouri State in which the Jacks gave up 352 yards rushing.

Both defenses have been beaten up pretty good in conference play... some of the numbers are below and the two teams are dead last in the Valley in several categories.

All in all, though, it should make for good TV (2:00 on Midco SN)... with two of the top 5 running backs in the nation head-to-head.

Zach Zenner is 3rd in the FCS right now at 141 yards per game. (Remember that 4 yards he had against North Dakota State?  That hurt his average a little bit.)

David Johnson is the man for UNI... he is 5th in the nation at 127 per game.  He scored 4 TD (2 run, 2 catch) at Iowa State.

The Jacks should/might be able to do some damage thru the air... Austin Sumner leads the Missouri Valley in passing at 232 yards per game and UNI is 9th in passing defense at 248 allowed per outing.

We will see.  It will be two teetering titans trying to stay on their feet and rally down the stretch.  Game on.


These are stats in Missouri Valley Conference play only.

TEAM                                                            UNI                                SDSU

PPG                                                                23.7                               20.8

OPP PPG                                                       28.7                               24.0

TOTAL YARDS PER GAME                        309                                310

OPP TOTAL YPG                                       440 (last)                    371 (6th)

RUSH YPG                                                   137                                77.5 (last)

OPP RUSH YPG                                         192 (8th)                     237 (last)

PASS YPG                                                    172                                232 (2nd to SIU)

OPP PASS YPG                                           248 (9th)                    135

3RD DOWN CONVERSIONS                  9/40 (23%) (last)     22/61 (36%) (6th)

OPP 3RD DOWN CONVERSIONS        44% (6th)                     47% (8th)

Filed Under Football | College | South Dakota State University