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Coyotes get first home playoff game since 1986

USD earns second FCS Playoff bid and will host Southern Illinois next Saturday at 5:00 PM
Published: Nov. 21, 2021 at 6:32 PM CST
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VERMILLION, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - The South Dakota Coyote football team had to wait until the very end of the FCS Playoff Selection Show to see their name come across the screen.

It certainly proved worth the wait, though, as it ends a 35-year wait to bring the postseason back to the Dakota Dome.

The Coyotes gathered in the Dome for a watch party and sequestered themselves separate from fans and administration as the bracket was revealed. The last matchup was revealed to be USD hosting Southern Illinois at the Dakota Dome next Saturday at 5:00 PM in the opening round of the FCS Playoffs.

It will be the first home playoff game in Vermillion for the program since they made their run to the NCAA Division Two National Championship Game in 1986. It’s the second FCS Playoff bid in the program’s Division One history. In 2017 the Coyotes won at Nicholls State in the first round before falling to Sam Houston State.

Though South Dakota and Southern Illinois are both in the Missouri Valley Football Conference, the fact that they did not play allowed them to be paired together in the opening round since regular season rematches are not permitted. The two programs last met on October 26, 2019, with the SIU winning in Vermillion 48-28. The all-time series is tied 3-3 with the Coyotes last victory a 31-24 win in Carbondale in 2018.

The winner of Saturday’s game will face second seed North Dakota State in Fargo in the second round on December 4th.

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