He has had quite the journey since he graduated from Roosevelt. Now Cody Larson is back in his home state and trying to lead the Jacks to their third straight Summit League title.
As he nears the midway point of his first season at South Dakota State Cody Larson in feeling comfortable and confident. The 6'9 junior is averaging just under 14 points, around 7 rebounds, and shooting over 53% from the field. Those are all great numbers, but it’s his 36 assists that show he is thinking about more than No. 34.
"Cody is a tremendous player and a great teammate. He had done tremendous things since he has been here. He has worked extremely hard and is a great teammate. As far as on the basketball court he brings us an extra big guy and a really good scorer. Inside he is talented with both his right and left hand. He can do a lot of things that other teams have to prepare for," SDSU Senior Guard Brayden Carlson said.
Cody grew up in Sioux Falls and played with many of his teammates that are also from the area. It's that Midwest bond that has made playing at Frost Arena come so naturally.
"It has been great and a very seamless transition for me. I knew a lot of the guys on the team already and they have been great to me, they are like my family. It really feels like home here," SDSU Junior Forward Cody Larson said.
Although Larson may be the Jacks newest big man on campus, their leader is still Jordyn Dykstra. The senior from Rock Valley, IA squared off with Larson several times in high school. Now they're competitiveness is driving the Rabbits success.
"I love it. We have always kind of been rivals growing up and now we mesh pretty well here I think. We are both unselfish and it is great playing with him," Larson said.
Coach Nagy may have gone out on a limb by bringing Larson to his program. SDSU is 2-2 in League play and they know the talents of their new protector of the paint may be the difference in defending their Summit League title.
"He is really important to us. He is important to our defense, our offense, our rebounding, and many other things. We feel like he is the kind of athlete that can impact every part of the game. We feel like he can have even more of an impact and that is what we are pushing for," SDSU Head Coach Scott Nagy said.
The Jackrabbits will host NDSU this Saturday. Tip off is set for 4 PM at Frost Arena.