116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
Here we go again. Facts about football that are fun. Or, semi-fun.
This week it’s the South Dakota State Jackrabbits and Iowa Hawkeyes. It isn’t Notre Dame-Ohio State in terms of national interest, but it’s certainly more pleasant than Russia-Ukraine. Or Johnny Depp-Amber Heard.
1. The Jackrabbits have made the FCS playoffs every season since 2012 and have won 10 of their last 15 playoff games.
2. Iowa’s Kirk Ferentz and South Dakota State’s John Stiegelmeier are the longest-tenured head football coaches in their schools’ histories. Ferentz’s first season as Iowa’s coach was 1999. Stiegelmeyer started two years sooner at SDSU. Ferentz’s Iowa record is 178-110. Stiegelmeyer’s SDSU mark is 185-111.
3. SDSU has 11 Iowans including two from Iowa City and one from Solon. Iowa has one South Dakotan, linebacker Seth Benson. Previous Hawkeyes from that state include Chad Greenway and Riley Reiff.
4. The Jacks scored 542 points to their opponents’ 296 last season, but were outscored in fourth quarters.
5. This is Iowa’s first game against a school from South Dakota since 1940.
6. Iowa tight end Sam LaPorta has the most receiving yards (941) over the last two seasons than any other Power Five conference tight end.
7. The Hawkeyes are 8-1 against FCS teams, but are just 3-6 against the spread in those games.
8. South Dakota State played 25 games in 2021 (8-2 in the spring, reaching the FCS title game, and 11-4 in the fall, reaching the FCS semis).
9. Iowa has players named Jack, Jackson, Jaxon, Jestin, Justin, John, Johnny, Jeremy, Jaden, Jayden, Jermari, Jeremiah, Justice, Jacob, Josh, Jamison, Jaziun, Josef, Joe and Jay. South Dakota State has twin brothers Jaxon and Jadon Janke. They have a combined 3,082 receiving yards and 29 touchdowns.
10. South Dakota State hosted ESPN’s CollegeGameDay in 2019. The last time GameDay came to Iowa City was 2006.
11. Iowa hasn’t allowed a turnover for a touchdown since 2017, hasn’t surrendered a safety since 2017, and hasn’t given up a kick return for a score since Christian McCaffrey in the 2016 Rose Bowl.
12. Iowa’s top two running backs are Gavin Williams and Leshon Williams. Last season, five FBS running backs named Williams rushed for at least 792 yards, led by UNLV’s Charles Williams with 1,256.
13. This is the first time Iowa wasn’t ranked entering its season-opener since 2017.
14. Noah Eagle, FS1’s play-by-play announcer for this game, is 25 years old. He is the son of Ian Eagle, a CBS play-by-play announcer for NFL games who calls NBA and NCAA basketball games for TNT and TBS.
15. First-year freshman Jackrabbit players are called New Jacks, which has nothing to do with “New Jack City.”
16. South Dakota is the home of Mount Rushmore. Iowa — Cedar Rapids, to be specific — is the home of Mount Trashmore.
17. Jackrabbits can run as fast as 40 miles per hour, and can leap 10 feet. But they are prey for hawks.