Jackrabbit Men's Hoops Update

Hello again, Jacks fans! Now that football season is over, the best show in town lies in Frost Arena with the men’s and women’s basketball teams for the next two to three months. 

As usual, my blog will focus mostly on the men’s program. As of late, the Jacks have gotten a chance to catch their breath after what seemed like a marathon start to the season. 

SDSU has lost two games in a row in challenging road environments. Against Indiana at Assembly Hall had to be a great experience for everyone involved. Despite the loss, that looks like a fun place to play and watch some college hoops. 

The Montana State game was a battle as the Bobcats pulled away with a late run to beat the Jacks by seven. 

It is a tough, yet a crucial point in the season for the men. As a mid-major, you continue to face challenging nonconference opponents while conference play inches closer. With college football season coming to an end, college basketball teams start getting more eyes watching games and final box sc…

Rants & Rave: 2019 Season

The Jacks season wrapped up with a disappointing loss on Saturday to UNI.  This whole season I had no doubt in my mind that this team was one of the top teams in the country.  I was sure of it and I still sort of am.  However, the inability to stretch the field on offense and not take care of the football ultimately doomed this team and at the end of the season, you are your record.  This year, the record was 8-5 which is unacceptable for the standard that has been set for this program.  So let's dive into what went right and what didn't in 2019.

Rave: The defense.  The Jacks have made the playoffs for eight consecutive seasons.  For a majority of the previous 7 the offense carried this team and the defense played a true bend but don't break style.  2019 was different. The defense was phenomenal and only allowed 16.7 ppg. They recorded 36 sacks and forced 18 interceptions.   In addition, they held opponents to just a 34% conversion rate on 3rd down and were stingy in the …

Game Preview: University of Northern Iowa, Rd 2

It was just a few weeks ago that the Jacks defeated the Panthers rather handily by a score of 38-7.  The Jacks took care of the ball in that contest while the Panthers did not; committing 4 turnovers that turned a competitive game into a rout.  Here is the preview for that game and I would encourage you to read it before reading the rest of this article as much of the info has stayed the same besides the stats.  While much is the same, there are some potentially huge differences in this game.  I'll use this blog to lay out those differences so that we are all prepared for Saturday.

1. UNI Injuries

In the first matchup, UNI was without Briley Moore (TE), Isaiah Weston (WR), Deion McShane (WR), Tyler Hoosman (RB), and Nick McCabe (RB).  In the first round against San Diego, Weston and McShane played.  Weston reaggravated his injury and his status for Saturday is unknown.  McShane, a dynamic athlete, is still recovering from his knee injury and did not make any statistical contributio…

Rants & Raves: USD

Writing "Rants & Raves" after a loss is never fun.  Writing them following a loss to USD is something I knew that eventually, I would have to do but I didn't believe that yesterday was the day.  I still feel somewhat stunned. However, I'm choosing to write now instead of tomorrow because this game needs to get put behind the team as quickly as possible.  The bracket will be announced today and there is zero time to wallow in self-pity.  This team has all the talent in the world.  The road to getting to Frisco will be tough but this team can do it.

Rave: Mikey Daniel was in my "What to Watch" and he did not disappoint.  He had 125 yards and 1 TD off of 17 attempts.  In my opinion, he wasn't used enough!   He was gashing the USD defense, especially in the second half.  However, once the team was down two scores it became tough to run the ball with limited timeouts.  
Rave: Christian Rozeboom's talent was on full display as he finished with 14 tot…

What to Watch: USD

This week the chatter surrounding SDSU at USD has been pretty quiet.  The usual trash talk hasn't really been happening.  That could be because USD is so down or it could mean that SDSU fans are just hoping that it is a cleanly played game with no cheap shots and no injuries from dirty play.  Whatever the case, it has been weird!

1. As has been the story this season, if SDSU can take care of the ball they will likely win.  Fumbles and untimely interceptions have played a major role in all three losses this season.  Can the Jacks replicate their effort from last week?  If they do, I think the defense is able to contain USD's powerful offense. 

2. Evan Greeneway vs. Darrin Greenfield is an important matchup to watch.  Last year Greenfield was held in check and he finished with just 3 tackles and one QBH.  If Greeneway is able to replicate that effort the Jackrabbit offense will be in a great position. 

3. I'm curious to see the USD skill at the wide receiver and tight end p…

Week 2: What You Should Know About Jacks MBB

The Jacks come home to Frost Arena tonight after nearly two weeks on the road. This week will feature two home games Nov. 19 and Nov. 24 against North Alabama and Mississippi Valley State, respectively. In between the two games will be a road contest against a Pac-12 opponent in the University of Arizona Nov 21.
Here’s what we can expect out of the week’s opponents:
North Alabama
The Lions have had a similar schedule to the Jacks that has included two Power-5 schools, including Indiana, who the Jacks will play next week. UNA ( 2-2) includes three double-digit scorers, all of who are guards. 
Jamari Blackmon was the team's top scorer from last season and is averaging 10.8 points per game. C.J. Brim has been a consistent scorer who averages 11.8 ppg. 
North Alabama came into the season ranked sixth in the Atlantic Sun preseason poll and is coming off a 10-22 season in 2018-19. 
Don’t expect to see a lot of scoring as the Lions average 69 ppg, but they do have 41 steals in four games playe…

Game Preview: University of South Dakota

The Jackrabbits (8-3, 5-2) are coming off a big win to face their in-state rival the University of South Dakota Coyotes (4-7, 3-4).  The Coyotes have had a disappointing season but a lot of wrongs could be made right with a victory over the Jacks.  For their part, the Jackrabbits could lock-up a top 8 seed and a first-round bye with a victory. 

The Yotes are led by Bob Nielson who is now in his fourth year at the helm. There has been a lot of turnover in his assistant coaching staff in the past two years.  USD has a powerful offense but the defense has struggled mightily at times in 2019.    USD leads the conference in penalties and is hit with about 8 for 81 yards per game.  Furthermore, those who play USD, are also penalized at the highest rate in the conference.  Having watched a number of USD games this year as I've scouted other MVFC teams, the Yotes are chippy and they are good at baiting their opponents into dead ball penalties.  The Jacks will need to keep their composure…