SDSU's Hale, Johnson Earn MVFC Honors

South Dakota State's Cade Johnson and Brady Hale were honored Sunday as Missouri Valley Football Conference Players of the Week for their standout performances in the Jackrabbits' season-opening 45-14 victory over Montana State on Sept. 8.

Johnson, a sophomore wide receiver from Papillion, Nebraska, earned Co-Offensive Player of the Week recognition after tying a Jackrabbit single-game school record with four touchdown receptions,while also setting career bests of nine receptions and 138 receiving yards. Johnson scored each of SDSU's first three touchdowns from 2, 24 and 19 yards, respectively, in the first half as the Jackrabbits led 24-0 at intermission. He tied the mark with a 7-yard touchdown reception early in the fourth quarter. Johnson also recorded a 23-yard kickoff return, giving him 161 all-purpose yards in the contest.

He shared the offensive award with South Dakota quarterback Austin Simmons.

A senior punter from Yankton, Hale received Special Teams Player of the Week honors after punting four times for an average of 48.0 yards. Three of Hale's punts landed inside the Bobcats' 20-yard line and two of his punts traveled 50-plus yards, including a 55-yarder.

The third-ranked Jackrabbits resume home action Saturday, hosting Arkansas-Pine Bluff in the 52nd Annual Beef Bowl. Kickoff is set for 6 p.m. at Dana J. Dykhouse Stadium.