Former Milbank High School athlete, Nick Mears, was one of six players selected as a team captain for the 2016 football season at South Dakota State University. He is one of three captains on the defensive side of the team.
“Being a captain is one of the best honors I’ve ever received, and I am very proud of it,” expressed Mears. “To know that your teammates respect you and entrust you with that responsibility is a unique feeling.”
Mears is a two-year starter at strong safety for the Jackrabbits. He was the team’s second-leading tackler in 2014 with 96 stops. He added 54 tackles and a pair of forced fumbles in nine games, but battled an injury late in the season last year.
Mears is joined by Jesse Bobbit and Shayne Gottlob as defensive captains. The three offensive captains named for 2016 were Zach Lujan, Jacob Ohnesorge, and Brady Mengarelli. Lujan is a returning captain and senior quarterback from Anchorage, Alaska, and Ohnesorge is a junior center from Wisconsin.
The Jacks wrapped up their spring practice with the annual Spring Game Saturday, April 23, but Mears is already looking ahead to another successful season for SDSU. “We expect to take the next step. We believe we have the talent to do that. Everyone in the program is working so that we can end our season in January.”
SDSU, which made its fourth consecutive appearance in the Football Championship Subdivision playoffs last season, will kick off the 2016 campaign September 3 at Texas Christian. The Jackrabbits will open the new Dana J. Dykhouse Stadium September 10 by hosting Drake, IA.