Lujan shines vs. SEC team, provides props for Alaska

August 30, 2014

Zach Lujan FootballHe started the game a backup.

He ended it a hero.

South Dakota State quarterback Zach Lujan of Anchorage replaced the starter early in the first half and played admirably for the underdogs in a 38-18 loss today at No. 24 Missouri.

This was the first game for the sophomore JC transfer and it came against a team from the mighty SEC, the premier conference in college football.

Lujan completed 21-of-28 passes for 239 yards. He threw for a two-point conversion and one interception. He orchestrated a 10-play, 75-yard scoring drive in the third quarter that got South Dakota State within 21-18.

“The more reps I got the more I felt like I belonged out there,” Lujan told reporters.

Credit the sophomore for being ready to go when his number was called after starter Austin Sumner got injured. He knew the team’s offensive game plan and executed it like he had been out there the whole time.

“I was a little too excited, so I was running around like a chicken with its head cut off,” he said. “In the second half I really calmed down and the game slowed down for me.”

Lujan, of South High fame, played last season at Chabot College where he was named 2013 Golden Gate Conference Offensive Player of the year and league MVP.

That was special. What he did today was historic.

You could argue that Lujan turned in the greatest offensive performance by a college football player from Alaska if you consider the opponent [Missouri], the setting [on the road], the situation [his first NCAA game] and the performance [he moved the ball against an SEC defense].