BROOKINGS, S.D. (KELO) — The 115th meeting of SDSU and USD went the way of the Jackrabbits as their defense was impressive in a 28-3 win.
SDSU leads the all-time series 56-52-7. The Jacks now control the Division I battle 8-2.
“Excited about the win. I do think USD is a good football and I do think they will win more football games this year,” SDSU head coach John Stigelmeier said. “I think our defense played a great game, but the biggest thing, is I love our players. I said that in the locker room. I’m just proud and I love them.”
19,332 fans watched Saturday’s game, which is the second largest crowd in SDSU history. Second only to the NDSU vs. SDSU game in 2019 that brought College Gameday to Brookings.
“That had an impact. It has an impact with that energy. Very happy with the impact and very happy with our fans,” Stiegelmeier said.
The Coyotes struck first in the contest as Travis Theis fueled a long drive. A 29 yard run by Theis put USD into field goal range.
They’d cash in three points via an Eddie Ogamba 37-yard field goal
The remainder of the first quarter saw very little offense. South Dakota outgained SDSU 67-45.
The SDSU offense was given great field position several times, but it wasn’t until the second quarter that the Jacks finally cashed in.
State went 80 yards in nine plays and cashed with a 28-yard touchdown pass from Mark Gronowski to Jaxon Janke.
Isaiah Davis would add another score for the Jacks later in the quarter, thanks to an impressive 47-yard touchdown run.
“Credit to the whole offense for making the blocks and making my job easy. It was a good day on the field,” Davis said.
The Jackrabbits would outgain the Yotes 157-16 in the second quarter and that’s what led to a 14-3 halftime lead.
SDSU would carry its second-quarter momentum into the third quarter.
State went on a seven-play, 70 yard drive that was capped by a five yard touchdown run from Davis.
The junior running back from Joplin, Missouri rushed for more than 100 yards on Saturday. It’s the tenth time in his career that he reached that mark.
The next SDSU drive started with 7:34 to play in the third quarter and it would last into the fourth quarter.
State took 15 plays to drive 80 yards. Davis would punch in a one yard touchdown run for his third score of the game. That tied a career high.
“That’s what we want to do. Keep the ball in our hands and kill the clock,” Davis said.
“They did a great job controlling the game in the third quarter, with their run game,” USD coach Bob Nielsen said. “I think we only had one possession in the quarter.”
The drive lasted eight minutes and thirteen seconds. It gave SDSU a 28-3 lead with just fourteen minutes to play.
USD came back onto the field, needing a big drive, but they would go three and out as the SDSU defense picked up back-to-back sacks.
State would begin another drive, but a deflected pass was intercepted by Josh Manchigiah, the former SDSU Jackrabbit. He’d set the Yotes up in plus territory.
It was the first time the defensive back played in Brookings as an opponent to the Jacks.
“It was very weird. At first, there was a lot of emotions. I’m still close with a lot of those guys (SDSU),” Manchigiah said.
USD would try to turn that opportunity into points. The Yotes got as close as the four yard line, but Caden Johnson would grab Camp for the seventh sack of the afternoon.
SDSU would run out the final 94 seconds on their way to a 28-3 win over the Coyotes.
SDSU outgained USD 345-136. State got 208 yards rushing, while holding USD to just 92 on the ground.
South Dakota threw for just 44 yards. SDSU came up with seven sacks, for a loss of 28 yards. Pressure was an issue throughout the contest for USD.
“We seen on film that he’s a great scrambler, but it comes down to preparation. We had lockdown coverage in the backend, which led to more pressure,” Reece Winkelman said. “We did a little more three techniques on the tackles to change it up a little bit, but I think it was just our effort.”
“If Carson’s first look wasn’t there, he didn’t have time to get a second look,” Nielsen said. “We didn’t throw the ball very well today. You can’t throw for 44 yards in college football. Offensively, we have to be better.”
State improved 5-1 with the victory. They’ll play at NDSU next week in the Dakota Marker Game.
“We surely gained confidence from this game. That’s the thing that adds to this upcoming game,” Stiegelmeier said. “We embrace the rivalry as one of the best. It’ll be one vs. two, at least in one poll.”
USD is now 1-4 on the season.
“The bye week was good. We got a few guys back that were able to play today,” Nielsen said. “It’s tough to play three of your first five games on the road, especially with the opponents we play, but we won’t make any excuses. We’ve played at times some really good football, but not through the course of the game. We’re going to get back to work tomorrow on that.”