Sacramento State Hornets Poised for Upset Bid against No. 3 South Dakota Coyotes in FCS Playoffs
The Sacramento State Hornets are set to embark on a thrilling journey in the FCS Playoffs, facing off against the formidable No. 3 South Dakota Coyotes on Saturday, December 2nd, at the DakotaDome in Vermillion, South Dakota. The highly anticipated matchup will be broadcast live on ESPN+.
How to Watch
What it is: 2023 FCS Football Championship
Matchup: Sacramento State Hornets vs. South Dakota Coyotes
Date: Saturday Dec. 2, 2023
Time: 2pm ET
Locations: DakotaDome, Vermillion, SD
Stream the Sacramento State vs South Dakota LIVE FCS Football Playoffs game on Fubo: Start your free trial today!
The Hornets, boasting an impressive 8-4 record, head into this pivotal game with unwavering determination, having secured victories in their last two outings. Their opponents, the South Dakota Coyotes, stand as a formidable force with a 9-2 record and a winning streak that spans six of their last seven games.
The rich history between the two teams adds an extra layer of intrigue to this clash. With 13 encounters in their history, South Dakota holds a slight edge in the series, leading 7-6. Their most recent encounter in 2021 resulted in a narrow 24-21 victory for South Dakota.
In this second-round playoff matchup, the Hornets seek to reverse the tide and claim victory against the highly ranked Coyotes. The No. 3 seed Coyotes and the No. 6 seed Hornets are poised for an electrifying showdown.
South Dakota Coyotes: A Seasoned Contender
The South Dakota Coyotes have established themselves as a seasoned contender in the FCS. Their impressive track record includes five North Central Conference championships in the past six years and four appearances in the FCS Playoffs since 2017.
Quarterback Carson Hansen leads the Coyotes’ offensive charge, having amassed an impressive 2,934 passing yards and 21 touchdowns this season. Running back Isaiah Sanders has also played a pivotal role in South Dakota’s success, contributing 923 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns.
The Coyotes’ defensive prowess is evident in their FCS ranking of 11th, allowing an average of 20.2 points per game. Linebacker Elijah Wilson spearheads the defensive unit, having accumulated 102 tackles this season.
Sacramento State Hornets: A Rising Star
The Sacramento State Hornets have emerged as a rising star in the FCS, having captured two Big Sky Conference championships in the past three years and made two FCS Playoff appearances since 2019.
Quarterback Asher O’Hara steers the Hornets’ offense, having tallied 2,822 passing yards and 19 touchdowns this season. Running back Cameron Skattebo has also proven to be a valuable asset for Sacramento State, contributing 784 rushing yards and six touchdowns.
The Hornets’ defensive resilience is reflected in their FCS ranking of 21st, allowing an average of 22.4 points per game. Linebacker Josh Johnson leads the defensive efforts, having recorded 101 tackles this season.
Key Factors to Watch
The outcome of this captivating matchup hinges on several crucial factors:
The battle between the quarterbacks: Both Carson Hansen and Asher O’Hara are exceptional quarterbacks with the ability to make game-changing plays.
The running game: Both teams possess talented running backs capable of breaking big plays and dictating the pace of the game.
The turnover battle: The team that emerges victorious in the turnover battle will likely hold the key to victory.
Prediction: A Close and Thrilling Contest
While the South Dakota Coyotes enter the game as the favorites, the Sacramento State Hornets possess the potential to deliver an upset victory. This highly anticipated matchup is expected to be a close and thrilling contest that will come down to the final moments.