Jackrabbits, Coyotes clash at 2 p.m. today
As a senior tight end for the South Dakota State University football team, Seth Daughters is excited to renew the largest in-state football rivalry in his final season.
The Winner High School graduate and Hamill native will take the field at 2 p.m. today with the Jackrabbits, who host South Dakota in a Missouri Valley Football Conference matchup at Coughlin-Alumni Stadium in Brookings.
It's the first meeting between the teams since 2003, but Daughters is trying to block out the added hype to help his team get a win.
"The rivalry isn't the focal point and the preparation has been the same as any other week," Daughters said from Brookings Wednesday afternoon in an interview with The Daily Republic. "But it has been interesting hearing from family and friends about the stories and memories from past games."Daughters has caught 13 passes for 107 yards and three touchdowns this year for the Jackrabbits, who are 7-3 overall and 5-2 in the MVFC. The Coyotes are 1-9 overall and 0-7 in the MVFC.
If SDSU gets a win and North Dakota State loses at Illinois State, the Jackrabbits would earn a share of their first MVFC title in what could be a four-way tie for the top spot.
The game, which will be televised on Midco Sports Net on Midcontinent Communications, will feature one of the country's top running backs in SDSU's Zach Zenner. The sophomore ranks second nationally, averaging 153.9 yards per game and has nine touchdowns on the season.
Quarterback Austin Sumner, a Brandon native, is 159-of-283 passing with 13 touchdowns and 13 interceptions on the season for 1,829 yards. Tyrel Kool is the Jacks' leading receiver with 32 catches for 407 yards and two touchdowns. Daughters, also a captain on the team, is sixth on the team in receptions.
"It's exciting to be a part of this game and it's interesting being in the senior class that's rekindled it," Daughters said. "I'm expecting a great atmosphere and a fun experience."
The Coyotes, who are on an eight-game losing streak, have gotten 584 rushing yards and four touchdowns on 113 carries from Marcus Sims. Maten Sanders has 127 carries for 485 yards and six touchdowns on the ground.
Quarterback Maten Vander is 130-of-232 passing with seven interceptions, seven touchdowns and 1,443 yards. His top receiving threats have been Terrance Terry and Will Powell, who both have 47 catches on the year. Terry has 520 yards and three scores, while Powell has 507 yards and two scores.
This is the 105th meeting between SDSU and USD in a series that dates back to 1889. USD leads the series by a 50-48-6 margin.