Leading up to this week’s season openers, Saturday Down South’s Brad Crawford breaks down scouting reports for the SEC’s out-of-conference opponents and what makes them click:

Opens Saturday at Mizzou (3:30 p.m. ET; SEC Network)

THE SKINNY: An FCS power north of Sioux Falls, the Jackrabbits are coached by 18-year veteran John Stiegelmeier and have posted 18 wins since the start of the 2012 season. Overmatched at nearly every position against Missouri, South Dakota State’s hoping the strength of a veteran quarterback, its top returning receiver and a career 4,500-yard rusher can keep things interesting at Faurot Field.

KEY PLAYER: Equipped with last season’s FCS leading rusher in Zach Zenner, the Jackrabbits gear their offense around their featured back and hope to control the clock against the high-powered Tigers led by Maty Mauk and Russell Hansbrough. Zenner’s posted consecutive 2,000-yard seasons and scored 23 touchdowns as a junior, so you can expect him to go ‘all in’ against a nationally-ranked FBS opponent this weekend.

WHAT TO WATCH: At times last season, South Dakota State was exposed through the air — not a good sign considering the Tigers’ projected passing prowess under Mauk. An impressive performance would instill confidence in Mizzou’s sophomore quarterback who hasn’t been sharp during practice. Establishing a rhythm with a bevy of unproven receivers is also a key factor following the departure of the offense’s three leading wideouts Dorial Green-Beckham, L’Damian Washington and Marcus Lucas.

FINAL SAY: Mizzou doesn’t feel like it has received the deserved praise this offseason coming off the program’s first SEC Eastern Division title and Saturday’s the first chance to take out the frustration on an opposing team. The Tigers’ defensive front seven is one of the league’s most fierce and it won’t take long before Markus Golden and Co. is disrupting what the Jackrabbits are trying to do offensively. Barring a slow start, Mizzou should run away with its opener in convincing fashion.