Sports

SDSU’s Home Slate Begins With Western Illinois

Brookings, South Dakota — After facing two ranked, dome-dwelling opponents in the first two weeks of the season, the South Dakota State University football team will make its home debut of the 2020-21 spring season and a return to the great outdoors Saturday, hosting Western Illinois in Missouri Valley Football Conference action.

Kickoff for the Dairy Drive game is slated for 2 p.m. at Dana J. Dykhouse Stadium.

SDSU, ranked eighth in this week’s Stats Perform FCS Top 25, split its first two games, winning 21-17 at No. 3 Northern Iowa on Feb. 19 before falling 28-17 Feb. 27 at 14th-ranked North Dakota.The Jackrabbits dropped five spots in this week’s poll.

Western Illinois, 0-1 overall and in the MVFC, had its scheduled opener at South Dakota postponed due to COVID concerns, then dropped a 30-24 home decision to Missouri State on Feb. 27.

South Dakota State has fared well in home openers under head coach John Stiegelmeier, who is in his 24th season at the helm of the Jackrabbit football program. In 23 previous home openers, SDSU has compiled a 19-4 record and has won nine in a row.

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