Jacks finish home stand with border battle versus Bison

Brian Kimmes

Brian Kimmes

The men’s basketball team finishes their four-game home stand with a match-up versus rival North Dakota State University on Feb. 3 at 7 p.m.

NDSU enters Saturday evening’s game with a 13-6 record, including a win over Big East powerhouse Marquette University.

NDSU has not defeated the Jackrabbits in the world’s largest rabbit den since the 2000-01 season. Bison Head Coach Tim Miles never has won in Brookings, having lost five in a row.

Saturday’s game will be the first time the two teams have met this season. Last year, the teams split a pair of games, with each team winning on their home court.

The Jacks won the last match-up, holding on to win the thriller in Frost Arena. With the recruitment of four football players, the Jacks won 67-65. Tight end Chris Wagner grabbed the game-clinching rebound in front of 4,040 fans.

South Dakota State and NDSU have played four of the same opponents this year. The Bison faired better against the common foes, going 3-1 in the four games. The Jackrabbits struggled, only winning one game out of the four.

The Bison bring to Brookings a five-game winning streak, while South Dakota State has struggled this season, having only won five games. In the first three of their four game home stand, the Jacks are 1-2.

Although the game does not start until 7 p.m. on Saturday evening, festivities for the game begin Friday night at 9:30 p.m. with a campout in the Intramural Building.

“We’re camping out to promote the game and get the students enthused for NDSU coming to town,” basketball fan Nick Hartley said.

Hartley said the campout is an attempt to get students motivated to make noise, wear yellow and bring their cowbells to the game Saturday evening.

At the campout, Keith Jensen, also known as the cowbell man, men’s basketball announcer JT and possibly others will be speaking to get the crowd excited.

Hartley said he will inform fans on chants and cheers to use in the stands, as well as provide player information. He also said there may be a few surprises for fans who attend. If more than 200 people show up, Hartley said he was promised by the head of promotions, Micah Grenz, that free food would be provided.

“This is a good chance for students and fans to come together and have fun on a historic night of firsts for Jacks FanAddicts and SDSU athletics,” Hartley said.