The South Dakota State University Jackrabbits will begin their title defense on Thursday in Brookings against Western Oregon.
It will also mark the first game for head coach Jimmy Rogers. Last year’s defensive coordinator takes over for John Stiegelmeier and will benefit from a strong core of offensive players returning from last year’s championship team.
This past April, the Jackrabbits had one offensive player selected from the National Championship team. When the 2024 NFL Draft rolls around the Jackrabbits could have up to six offensive players hear their names get called during draft weekend.
Isaiah Davis, RB
During his first season as a full-time starter, Davis rushed for 1,451 yards and 15 touchdowns. He’s a well-built running back who refuses to go down on initial contact. According to Pro Football Focus, Davis racked up 938 yards after contact. The former Missouri Gatorade Player of the Year showcases good vision and scoots through the hole with outstanding burst.
Isaiah Davis, the SDSU RB racked up 938 yards after contact last season (via PFF).
If the Packers don't land JT, Davis could be a target for the Packers in the 2024 NFL Draft. pic.twitter.com/icDGGlUPsx
— Brennen Rupp (@Brennen_Rupp) August 30, 2023
Jaxon Janke, WR
The Madison, South Dakota native is a detailed route runner. Janke has vice grips for hands, only dropping one pass last season on 88 targets. The SDSU wide receiver has hauled in 132 receptions for 2,033 yards and 14 touchdowns over the past two seasons. Along with what he brings to the table on offense, Janke brings special teams value as a return specialist. He enters his final season at Brookings with a 12.2 punt return average and one punt return touchdown.
#SmallSchoolSaturday Vol. 5
Some names (not all) in this year’s sub-FBS wideout group that @seniorbowl will be 👀 this fall. Stars like @CooperKupp & Christian Watson used big weeks in Mobile against top competition to prove they belonged.
— Jim Nagy (@JimNagy_SB) July 1, 2023
Jadon Janke, WR
Janke, like his twin brother, is going to be a fan-favorite of special teams coordinators. He brings value as a return specialist and has also played on punt and kickoff coverage units. During his career at Brookings, he’s averaged 11.4 yards per punt return, with one touchdown and 19.3 yards per kick return. He has strong hands, with a little wiggle after the catch.
Jaxon's twin brother Jadon Janke is another name to know.
Could be a day one contributor on STs as a KR/PR.
That SDSU offense could have six players selected in the 2024 NFL Draft. https://t.co/MWDb0ZTJAx
— Brennen Rupp (@Brennen_Rupp) July 1, 2023
Zach Heins, TE
Heins is nowhere near the same level of athlete as his former running mate, Tucker Kraft. What he lacks in pure athleticism, he makes up for with his size (6-7, 260). He’s strong at the point of attack as a blocker and does an adequate job of keeping his legs driving to drive defenders downfield. He finished last season with career highs in receptions (29) and yards (347) to go along with four touchdowns. With Kraft no longer in the picture, SDSU quarterback Mark Gronowski could look to target his big-bodied tight end over the middle of the field more frequently this fall.
— Hula Bowl (@Hula_Bowl) October 15, 2022
Garrett Greenfield, OT
Greenfield enters his final season at SDSU with 24 career starts at right tackle and 16 at left tackle, starting 15 games at left tackle last season. The 30-game starter has light feet as a pass blocker and showcases the lateral quickness to mirror edge rushers. He has the easy athleticism to climb to the second level without laboring. After giving up two sacks against Iowa and UC Davis to start last season, Greenfield gave up zero sacks and just eight pressures during the final 13 games.
— Ben Fennell (@BenFennell_NFL) December 7, 2021
Mason McCormick, OL
Maybe one of the most seasoned interior linemen in the 2024 NFL Draft, McCormick has started 42 games at left guard for the Jackrabbits. The Sioux Falls, South Dakota native is smooth in pass protection and has strong hands. He showcases good quickness and erases defenders at the second level.
Everyone’s favorite drill @MasonLMcCormick
— The Draft Network (@TheDraftNetwork) May 18, 2023