The SDSU players and coaches may not have had September 21st circled on the schedule, but everyone certainly has. This week the Jackrabbits will be busy preparing for their biggest test of the season as they head to Nebraska.
"We don't look at it as a Super Bowl mentality, but surely it will be a great test for our football team," SDSU Head Coach John Stiegelmeier said.
The Jackrabbits will make their second trip to Lincoln in four years this Saturday. They come in ranked sixth in the FCS with a 3-0 record. But they know Taylor Martinez and his Corn Huskers will be an entirely different beast.
"We're excited. It's a great opportunity for our program and our football team. They've got a great team in Lincoln. They are athletic, fast, but we're going down there ready for a dog fight," SDSU Junior QB Austin Sumner said.
South Dakota State gave Nebraska a run for their money in 2010 when they came up short losing 17-3. Only a handful of this year's squad was around to experience that trip. Nonetheless its experience they can use.
"I think it helps. I went down there as a true freshman and saw the stadium. It's a pretty crazy environment, but it should be fun," SDSU Junior RB Zach Zenner said.
"You have to play great against a team like Nebraska. So I hope none of our guys are relying on having been there or having seen our team play well against them," Stiegelmeier said.
Nebraska is coming off a heartbreaking loss at home that knocked them out of the top 25. SDSU knows they are underdogs coming into Memorial Stadium, but with their experience and confidence they are feeling good about playing on a national stage. But can they pull the upset?
"I think so. I have confidence in our group of guys and our coaches. We're going to have to play at a high level," Sumner said.
"If we're lucky enough to play well, we will have to experience that and see how it turns out. One thing there is in a football game, there are no moral victories. We're not going down there to play close," Stiegelmeier said.
Kickoff for the game is set for 2:30 and will be aired on the Big Ten Network.