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Time to Dance: South Dakota State, Summit

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Who? The Jackrabbits of South Dakota State. Also known as Jacks.

What? A jackrabbit is a pretty bad-ass critter for its size, but South Dakota State is surprisingly uninformative as to why they chose this bad-ass critter over many others, though I'm going to take a wild guess that it's native to the area. SDSU made a big deal about a naming contest for the Jackrabbit... and then chose Jack Rabbit. I'll restrain my innate urge to mock the state of South Dakota.

Where? Brookings, South Dakota, where the city owns many of the local utilities and services.

When? March 8th, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

Why? Because they won the Summit League conference tournament.

How? The Jackrabbits withstood a strong effort from spirited third seed Oakland to head back to the NCAA tournament with a 61-54 win. Kristin Rotert had 17 points for South Dakota State.

Surprise? Yes and no. South Dakota State graduated a lot of seniors, but no matter what kind of regular season they're having, the Jacks are a force to be reckoned with in crunch time.

Who's driving this thing, anyway? Aaron Johnston, since 2000. He's coached golf for SDSU as well. Apparently there is also something involving Minnesota and a clock.

RPI: 128

SOS: 158

Record: 19-13 (12-6)

Best win: Washington State (A)

Worst loss: Southern Utah (A)

Notable results: Arkansas-Little Rock (canceled), Arizona State (H, L, 63-52), Middle Tennessee (A, L, 70-51)


Ten rebounds and nine points separate junior Jennie Sunnarborg and senior Kristin Rotert from having identical averages of 13.2 points and over four rebounds per game (4.4 for Sunnarborg, 4.7 for Rotert). Aaron Johnston has done an excellent job of keeping second-tier local talent local, with a team entirely from South Dakota and Minnesota.