CSJ’s 2018 Week 2 Game Preview: Montana State @ South Dakota State

Montana State at South Dakota State
When: Saturday, September 8th, 6:00 PM CDT
Where: Dana J. Dykhouse Stadium, Brookings, S.D.
TV/Streaming Coverage:Midco Sports Network | Jackrabbits All-Access (subscription) | ESPN+ (subscription)

Montana State (1-0, 0-0 Big Sky, last week W 26-23 vs Western Illinois)

Tristen Bailey’s fourth field goal of the game, this time from 25 yards out, gave Montana State a season-opening 26-23 win over visiting Western Illinois last Thursday night at Bobcat Stadium.

Overall, this week’s matchup will be the 15th all-time meeting between the Jackrabbits and Bobcats, with Montana State holding a 10-4 edge in the series that dates back to 1956.

Key Player: QB Troy Andersen was last year’s Big Sky Freshman of the Year. He started games at both running back and linebacker but started this year as the Bobcat signal caller. He ran for 145 yards last week but just 85 passing yards He will likely need to use his arm more in this game.

Fantasy Bonus Baby:DE Bryce Sterk is the anchor on the line. He finished with eight tackles and two sacks in the Western Illinois game. He should put up some good numbers on defense this week with an SDSU offense that will likely keep the ball a lot.

South Dakota State (0-0, 0-0 MVFC, Canceled at Iowa State last week)

SDSU’s season opener at Iowa State last weekend was ended in the first quarter because of severe weather after SDSU trailed 7-0.

SDSU is coming off a NCAA Division I FCS semi-final appearance and does lose a two of the program’s top players ever at their positions, receiver Jake Wieneke and tight end Dallas Goedert, but should still be a powerful offense and has a very strong defense.

Key Player: LB Christian Rozeboom registered 127 tackles a year ago after getting 132 as a freshman. He has 12.5 career tackles-for-loss, three fumbles recovered and two forced. Look for him to be all over the field in this game.

Fantasy Bonus Baby: QB Taryn Christion, who is a 6-2 senior, broke into the starting lineup as a true freshman and has never left, rolling up a 23-8 record as the Jackrabbits’ starting quarterback. Christion owns the school’s touchdown pass (72) and total offense (9,697 entering 2018) records, along with seven single-season marks.

Fearless Prediction: Last year’s matchup between these two teams went to the end in SDSU’s 31-27 win. Montana State left seven points on the board by missing an extra point and two field goals, South Dakota State’s Chase Vinatieri, who returns in 2018, made a 47-yard field and all four of his PATs. For good measure, with 4:26 to play and the Jackrabbits clinging to a 24-21 lead, Vinatieri scampered 31 yards to turn an apparent field goal attempt into a touchdown. Look for some similar type of play in this close matchup but SDSU at home should take care of this opening win. South Dakota State 27, Montana State 23