Two Jacks named All-Americans
A junior offensive tackle from Houlton, Wis., Witzmann anchored a Jackrabbit offensive line that led the way for Zenner to reach 2,000 yards and record averages of 23.4 points and 367.6 yards of total offense per game. Witzmann has started at left tackle each of the Jackrabbits' 35 games over the past three seasons, earning first-team all-Missouri Valley Football Conference honors in 2012 after an honorable mention selection in 2011.
Zenner, a sophomore running back from Eagan, Minn., was named to his second All-America team in as many weeks. Honored earlier by the American Football Coaches Association, Zenner has since regained the lead in the FCS rushing race with 2,044 yards for an average of 157.2 yards per game. He crossed the 100-yard mark in nine games and topped 200 yards three times, including a school-record 295 yards in the opening round of the FCS playoffs Nov. 24 versus Eastern Illinois. Zenner averaged 6.8 yards per carry and scored 13 touchdowns on the ground, while adding 28 receptions for 197 yards.
The selections of Witzmann and Zenner marked the first time the Jackrabbits have had two first-team All-Americans in the same season at the Division I level. In 2007, offensive lineman Mitch Erickson was a first-team selection with defensive back Tyler Koch earning third-team honors. The 2009 playoff squad featured first-teamm defensive end Danny Batten and third-team running back Kyle Minett.
South Dakota State finished the 2012 season with a 9-4 overall record, including a runner-up mark of 6-2 in the Missouri Valley Football Conference. The Jackrabbits' nine wins were their most in a season at the Division I level as they made their second playoff appearance in four seasons.