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Montana State's Lance McCutcheon emerges as a top FCS receiver during breakout season

McCutcheon celebrates 16-yard touchdown
Posted at 8:33 AM, Oct 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-04 10:33:50-04

BOZEMAN — Montana State rolled past Northern Colorado 40-7 Saturday to improve to 2-0 in the Big Sky with impressive play on both sides of the ball, but one player, in particular, continues to stand out week after week - Bozeman’s very own Lance McCutcheon.

“Nothing to this point really surprised me," Bobcats head coach Brent Vigen said. "Lance is hard to cover. When you have a receiver that’s hard to cover, it makes those throws much more desirable. That will be a matchup we continue to go after, especially when people want to keep playing single coverage.”

2021 has been a breakout season for the senior.

With his 107 receiving yards on Saturday against the Bears, McCutcheon now sits second in the Big Sky and fifth in all of the FCS with 521 yards through five games. For perspective, he only recorded a combined 522 yards receiving through his first three seasons.

“He’s just become a huge playmaker for our offense," senior linebacker Callahan O'Reilly added. "Anytime they throw the ball up to him there’s a good chance he’s coming down with it, and he’s been making a lot of explosive plays, which is awesome to see.”

Saturday also happened to be a day of firsts for the wide receiver. With UNC in a drop-eight mode on defense, the Bobcats found success on the ground early with a 10-yard sweep from McCutcheon for his first-ever career rushing touchdown.

“We knew the nature of their defense," Vigen explained. "We had to come out and run the football, and we did that, and it really changed the complexion of how they played the rest of the game.”

"I really haven’t gotten the ball like that, so to get one on one of my second or third times this year finding the endzone was really cool," McCutcheon smiled.

By focusing on their run game early, the Bears responded by stacking the box, which allowed McCutcheon to get loose notching his third 100-yard receiving game of the season.

As a team, the Bobcats finished balanced on offense with 276 passing and rushing yards.

“When the ball comes my way I’m going to try as hard as I can to come down with it," McCutcheon stated.

Montana State will return to Bobcat Stadium Saturday for their homecoming game against Cal Poly with kickoff set for 2 p.m.