Nov 24, 2012 4:53 PM by Q2 Sports
BOZEMAN - Brad Huse's focus for Montana State's visit to Oregon State Sunday is a simple one.
"We've got to slow them down," Montana State's seventh-year head coach said of his team's third road game in its first four outings, which begins at 4 pm MT. "We can't let the score get up into the 80s. We've played two road games and allowed 80 points (or more) each time."
The task shapes up as a tall one for the Bobcats. OSU enters Sunday game with a 3-1 record, averaging 75.2 points per game overall and 86.5 in its two home games, with each victory over Division I opposition. The Beavers own wins over Purdue of the Big 10 and New Mexico State of the WAC (along with Niagara), with the team's only loss a three-point defeat by Alabama.
"We have to deal with their length and their ability to score," said Huse, who owns a pair of wins in Gill Coliseum. "They're off to a great start and have had a lot of time to prepare for this game. We'll have to overcome the travel and the things that accompany that against a top tier Pac 12 team.
"We have to rebound the basketball," Huse said. "They are long and athletic and big, and if we don't limit them to one shot attempt per possession it could be a long afternoon."
A pair of Bobcat forwards made their 2012-13 debuts at Air Force Wednesday. Senior Xavier Blount scored 13 points, while junior Jeff Budinich added three. Junior guard Antonio Biglow leads the Bobcats with 16.7 points, 2.7 steals and 2.0 assists per game, while junior forward Calen Coleman has added scoring off the bench. In three games as a reserve, Coleman has scored in double-digits each time.
While Sunday's contest caps a difficult stretch to begin the season - three road games, all guarantee contests that provide no return visit by the opponent and all four against Division I competition - it also marks MSU's final non-league road game of the 2012-13 season. "These games will prepare us for our conference schedule (which begins with a road trip to Northern Arizona on Dec. 17 and Sacramento State on Dec. 19)."
The Bobcats play Pepperdine in Bozeman on Nov. 29 as part of a men's-women's doubleheader, then host San Jose State on Dec. 1 at 12 noon. That game was rescheduled to accommodate MSU's FCS Playoff game that day at 5 pm.