For the first time this year College Gameday will not be traveling to an FBS School. They will be traveling to FCS school, South Dakota State University, the home of the Jackrabbits. There is a huge FCS game this weekend as the 6-1 Jackrabbits host their rivals, the North Dakota State Bison, who are the number 1 FCS team in the country and currently undefeated at 7-0. This game will have huge matchup implications on the FCS playoffs, and with these teams really being the class of the FCS it would not be surprising to see at least one of them in the FBS at some point in the future.
Brookings, South Dakota
#1 North Dakota State @ #3 South Dakota State
The Dakota Marker trophy is on the line once again as these two FCS powerhouses face off with NDSU looking to win their third straight in this rivalry.
South Dakota State’s only loss came on the road to an undefeated Minnesota team in which they were actually leading in the 4th quarter. In that game, and most of their other games, SDSU rode their defense. The Jackrabbits are in the top in the FCS in scoring defense only allowing 15 PPG this season and that includes a game against a Big 10 team where they allowed 28 points.
On the flip side, North Dakota State is number 1 in the country in scoring defense allowing only 10 PPG this season. What make this team scary is the fact that they are also in the top 10 in scoring offense in the FCS averaging 39 PPG this season. Their smallest margin of victory this year was an 11 point victory over UC Davis. This team has been the undisputed top dog in the FCS all season long.
Both of these teams are going to try and run the shit out of the ball today as both are in the top 12 in rush YPG this year while averaging over 6 YPC as a team which is fucking crazy!
The SDSU rushing attack is led by Pierre Strong who has over 750 yards on the season so far with 6 TDs. In a game like today, they will rely heavily on him while hoping QB J’Bore Gibbs can take care of the ball. Gibbs has 10 TDs and 4 picks on the year and the Jackrabbits will need him to take care of the ball if they want any shot at pulling the upset today.
NDSU is led by a RBBC of 4 or 5 guys including QB Trey Lance. They don’t even seem to have a leader in the backfield as they have had 5 different guys lead the team in carries in their 7 games. They are 4th in the FCS in rushing yards per game so that goes without saying, but what the Jackrabbits will really have to watch out for is the insane QB play of Bison QB Trey Lance.
Trey Lance has been fucking bananas this year. He has thrown for over 1200 yards, 15 TDs and 0 Ints. On top of his ability to throw the ball he is one of the team’s leading rushers as well. This year Lance has over 450 yards rushing and 7 TDs to help keep the Bison undefeated.
After watching plenty of highlights on these teams over the last week, it is easy to see that these teams are just as talented if not more talented than about half the FBS teams. Not only is the talent there in this game, but it is one of the best rivalries in all of college football.
It is awesome that College Gameday passed over some SEC and Big 10 games to travel to South Dakota, because these guys deserve this type of attention! It’s going to be a great fucking game but only one team will come out on top.
NDSU Bison-27 SDSU Jackrabbits-24