For the past three years South Dakota State has only faced Big Sky or Missouri Valley Football Conference members in the FCS playoffs.
That changes on Saturday when, for just the second time since moving to division one, they'll face a team out of the east coasts Colonial Athletic Association, the Villanova Wildcats.
The Wildcats are 9-3 under Andy Talley who is in his 32nd and final season as Villanova head coach. They won the FCS National title in 2009, and they'll bring the 17th ranked rushing attack in FCS at 215 yards per game to Brookings for Saturday's 2 PM second round game.
It should be quite a test for the SDSU defense which has improved dramatically since giving up more than 400 yards to Cal Poly back in September.
"Just the little things. Those first couple games we weren't off by much. I mean, it was just we miss a play here, we mess up here, something little, it wasn't anything too serious so we knew that we'd be able to get better throughout the year." SDSU Senior Defensive Lineman Cole Langer says.
"(Villanova is) A little bit like Montana. They spread you out, they run the ball a lot more than Montana. They play Montana, real close to Montana's defense. You know I don't know if where you come from, who you play matters, you got to play great football at this time of the year." SDSU Head Football Coach John Stiegelmeier says.