Iowa State vs. South Dakota State fearless prediction and game preview.
Date: Saturday, September 1
Game Time: 8:00 pm ET
Venue: Jack Trice Stadium, Ames, IA
Iowa State (0-0) vs. South Dakota State (0-0) Game Preview
After a fantastic season with 11 wins and a deep run into the FCS playoffs, South Dakota State has the talent and makeup to ruin all of the Iowa State good vibes coming off of last year.
The Jackrabbits are No. 3 in the preseason FCS rankings – the Cyclones are going to have to work to win this. Lose, and with a trip to Iowa up next followed by the Big 12 opener against Oklahoma, and it’ll likely be a rough start to the season.
One Reason Why South Dakota State Will Win
The offense is good enough to explode on the Iowa State defense.
Star receivers Dallas Goedert and Jake Wineke might be gone, and Tayrn Christion might have thrown 14 picks, but the passing game that cranked up 3,515 yards and 35 touchdowns should be at it again.
Leading rusher Brady Mengarelli is done, but the ground game that averaged five yards per carry will be more than fine with just about everyone else back, including Christion, one of the team’s most dangerous runners.
The Cyclone defense will be more than fine, but it loses five starters including a few vital safeties. Not having LB Joel Lanning around anymore doesn’t help, either.
This won’t be an Iowa State team that will like shootouts – at least until the receivers rise up and rock – however …
One Reason Why Iowa State Will Win
Good luck stopping the Cyclone running game.
The offense wasn’t efficient enough throughout last season, and the line has to be a bit stronger for the ground attack, but the running backs are fantastic.
David Montgomery is a favorite of the NFL types leading a great group of backs who should have room to move. As good as SDSU was throughout last season, there wasn’t much pressure into the backfield and the run defense was mediocre.
Iowa State should be able to control the clock and the game, slowing down the Jackrabbit tempo.
What’s Going To Happen
South Dakota State is going to make this a four quarter fight.
Iowa State’s O line will do enough to allow QB Kyle Kempt to come up with an effective enough day to keep the chains moving, but it’ll be the running attack that saves the game.
The Jackrabbit offense will move. It’ll be balanced and it’ll keep up the scoring, but it just won’t have the ball enough. Iowa State has to have its offense on the field for at least 35 minutes, and it will. That’s where Montgomery becomes the star, coming up with a 100+ yard day.