South Dakota State Jackrabbits

Are part of the Summit League, were established in 1881, and their home arena is Frost Arena, South Dakota State University in Brookings, South Dakota.
South Dakota State Jackrabbits

The South Dakota State Jackrabbits represent a compelling saga in NCAA basketball, a tale woven with perseverance, achievement, and an enduring spirit. Embarking on their journey in the early 20th century, the Jackrabbits have traversed through various phases of basketball evolution, establishing a legacy that resonates beyond the confines of their home court at Frost Arena. Their story is not just about the games won or titles earned; it’s a narrative steeped in the culture of South Dakota, the resilience of their players, and the unwavering support of their fans.

Intriguing Facts About the South Dakota State Jackrabbits

  • Historical Dominance and Transition: The Jackrabbits, before their transition to NCAA Division I in 2004, were a veritable force in Division II, culminating in a glorious triumph in the 1963 NCAA College Division Basketball Tournament. This victory not only etched their name in the annals of basketball history but also set the stage for their future endeavors in Division I.
  • Record-Breaking 2022 Season: The team’s 2022 season was a monumental chapter in their history, with a school-record 30-4 season. This remarkable feat was accentuated by a 21-game win streak, the longest in the nation at the time, and an unprecedented 21-0 record against Summit League opponents, showcasing their dominance in the conference.
  • Conference Prowess: Over the years, the Jackrabbits have secured 20 conference championships within the North Central Conference, a testament to their consistent high-level performance and strategic prowess on the court.
  • NCAA Tournament Appearances: Their illustrious journey includes 24 appearances in the NCAA Division II Tournament and six in the NCAA Division I Tournament, illustrating their adaptability and competitiveness across different levels of collegiate basketball.
  • NBA Legacy: The program has been a breeding ground for basketball talent, producing seven NBA draft picks. Players like Nate Wolters and Steve Lingenfelter not only shone at the collegiate level but also carried the Jackrabbits’ legacy into the professional arena.

The Historical Tapestry of the South Dakota State Jackrabbits

The Jackrabbits’ story is a rich tapestry of trials, triumphs, and transitions. From their early days, they demonstrated a knack for basketball excellence, which became more pronounced as they dominated the Division II landscape. The 1963 national championship was a defining moment, symbolizing their mastery of the game at the time. However, their journey was not without challenges. The shift to Division I in 2004 marked a new era, demanding adaptation and renewed vigor. The Jackrabbits rose to the occasion, gradually increasing their win total each season, and by 2011-2012, they achieved their first 20-win season at the Division I level, a clear indication of their evolving prowess and resilience.

The Golden Era

The golden era of the Jackrabbits is highlighted by their dominance in Division II, especially in 1963 when they won the NCAA College Division Basketball Tournament. Coaches and players during this era fostered a philosophy of teamwork, resilience, and strategic play, setting a standard for future generations. This era wasn’t just about winning games; it was about building a program that would stand the test of time. The coaches instilled a culture of hard work, discipline, and a team-first mentality that became the cornerstone of Jackrabbits basketball. Key players from this era left a lasting impact, not only with their on-court skills but also with their leadership and dedication to the game.

 The Current Landscape

Today, the South Dakota State Jackrabbits, under the guidance of coach Eric Henderson, continue to carve their niche in the college basketball landscape. Their recent performances, particularly the record-setting 2022 season, are a testament to the program’s ongoing commitment to excellence. The current squad is known for its dynamic play, tactical acumen, and a cohesive team dynamic. This era is marked by adaptability and innovation, as the team continually evolves to meet the challenges of modern collegiate basketball. The coaching staff’s strategic approach, coupled with the players’ skill and teamwork, has kept the Jackrabbits competitive and relevant in the ever-changing world of NCAA basketball.

Legendary Figures in South Dakota State Jackrabbits History

The Jackrabbits’ legacy has been shaped by many legendary figures, including influential coaches who have guided the team through different eras and players who have left an indelible mark on the program. These figures have not only contributed to the team’s successes but have also inspired new generations of players and fans. Their impact extends beyond their statistical achievements; they have been mentors, role models, and symbols of the Jackrabbits’ enduring spirit. Their stories are woven into the fabric of the program, serving as a source of inspiration and a benchmark for excellence.

A Game to Remember

One of the most memorable games in the Jackrabbits’ recent history was during the 2022 season, where they secured their NCAA tournament spot with a record-breaking 21-game winning streak. This game was not just a demonstration of their skill and determination but also a testament to their team spirit and the strategic acumen of the coaching staff. The game’s context, the intense atmosphere, and the high stakes made it a nail-biting experience for both the players and the fans. Its impact resonated beyond the scoreline, reinforcing the team’s reputation as a formidable force in NCAA basketball.

South Dakota State Jackrabbits [year] Schedule

Regular Season

Week Date Opponent Result
Week 1 Date: Mon 06/11/2023 Opponent: Akron Zips Result: L 75-81
Week 1 Date: Wed 08/11/2023 Opponent: Dakota Wesleyan Tigers Result: W 83-55
Week 2 Date: Mon 13/11/2023 Opponent: Kansas State Wildcats Result: L 68-91
Week 2 Date: Sun 19/11/2023 Opponent: Central Florida Knights Result: L 80-83
Week 3 Date: Mon 20/11/2023 Opponent: George Mason Patriots Result: L 71-73
Week 3 Date: Wed 22/11/2023 Opponent: Southern Miss Golden Eagles Result: W 65-54
Week 4 Date: Mon 27/11/2023 Opponent: Mount Marty Lancers Result: W 92-70
Week 4 Date: Fri 01/12/2023 Opponent: Towson Tigers Result: W 61-48
Week 5 Date: Tue 05/12/2023 Opponent: Kent St. Golden Flashes Result: L 73-82
Week 5 Date: Sat 09/12/2023 Opponent: Wichita St. Shockers Result: W 79-69
Week 6 Date: Thu 14/12/2023 Opponent: Mayville State Comets Result: W 94-62
Week 7 Date: Wed 20/12/2023 Opponent: Wyoming Cowboys Result: L 65-78
Week 7 Date: Thu 21/12/2023 Opponent: Wyoming Cowboys Result: TBD
Week 7 Date: Thu 21/12/2023 Opponent: Norfolk State Spartans Result: L 65-84
Week 8 Date: Sun 31/12/2023 Opponent: North Dakota Fighting Hawks Result: W 80-61
Week 9 Date: Wed 03/01/2024 Opponent: Weber St. Wildcats Result: L 73-75
Week 9 Date: Sat 06/01/2024 Opponent: Montana St. Bobcats Result: W 89-61
Week 10 Date: Thu 11/01/2024 Opponent: St. Thomas (MN) Tommies Result: W 81-80
Week 10 Date: Sat 13/01/2024 Opponent: Denver Pioneers Result: L 80-99
Week 11 Date: Thu 18/01/2024 Opponent: Nebraska Omaha Mavericks Result: W 90-87
Week 11 Date: Sat 20/01/2024 Opponent: South Dakota Coyotes Result: W 73-55
Week 12 Date: Thu 25/01/2024 Opponent: Kansas City Roos Result: W 75-66
Week 12 Date: Sat 27/01/2024 Opponent: Oral Roberts Golden Eagles Result: L 82-87
Week 13 Date: Thu 01/02/2024 Opponent: North Dakota State Bison Result: L 73-74
Week 13 Date: Sun 04/02/2024 Opponent: South Dakota Coyotes Result: W 70-67
Week 14 Date: Sat 10/02/2024 Opponent: Oral Roberts Golden Eagles Result: W 83-72
Week 15 Date: Thu 15/02/2024 Opponent: Kansas City Roos Result: L 67-72
Week 15 Date: Sat 17/02/2024 Opponent: Nebraska Omaha Mavericks Result: W 85-77
Week 16 Date: Thu 22/02/2024 Opponent: Denver Pioneers Result: W 97-70
Week 16 Date: Sat 24/02/2024 Opponent: St. Thomas (MN) Tommies Result: W 77-72
Week 17 Date: Thu 29/02/2024 Opponent: North Dakota Fighting Hawks Result: W 72-62
Week 17 Date: Sat 02/03/2024 Opponent: North Dakota State Bison Result: W 78-61

Post Season

Week Date Opponent Result
Conf. Tournament Date: Sat 09/03/2024 Opponent: Oral Roberts Golden Eagles Result: W 79-63
Conf. Tournament Date: Mon 11/03/2024 Opponent: St. Thomas (MN) Tommies Result: W 59-49
Conf. Tournament Date: Tue 12/03/2024 Opponent: Denver Pioneers Result: W 76-68
NCAA Tournament Date: Thu 21/03/2024 Opponent: Iowa State Cyclones Result: L 65-82

Home of the South Dakota State Jackrabbits: Frost Arena

Frost Arena, with a capacity of 6,500, is more than just a basketball venue; it is the heart of the Jackrabbits’ basketball program. The arena’s history is interwoven with the team’s successes and struggles, witnessing some of the most memorable moments in their journey. The atmosphere during game days is electric, filled with the passionate cheers of fans who come not just to watch a game but to be part of a community that celebrates basketball and supports their team unconditionally. Frost Arena is not just a place where basketball games are played; it’s a sanctuary where legends are born, and dreams are realized.