Montana State looks to defend home win streak against UC Davis

Posted at 5:17 PM, Sep 30, 2022

BOZEMAN — While many Big Sky opponents agree that playing at Eastern Washington is not easy since the installment of their red turf, it’s also fair to say that many of them have those same sentiments about Bobcat Stadium.

Montana State (3-1, 1-0) currently has the longest active home win streak in the FCS with 14, but as the Bobcats turn the page to Week 5, UC Davis (1-3, 0-1) could pose a real threat.

"I think you just flip the film on and I think our guys recognize that this is going to be a challenge on both sides of the football," head coach Brent Vigen said during Monday's presser.

Even though UC Davis may have one of the worst records in the Big Sky, Vigen knows their 1-3 start is misleading, which features close losses against two top-10 programs: No.2 South Dakota State and No. 8 Weber State.

“To this point, being 1-3, I don't think it tells a story," Vigen stated. "They were right there against South Dakota State with a chance to tie. Last Saturday with this game against Weber that was a back-and-forth affair, so I do think as I’ve seen them - I mean we haven’t played them since I’ve been here yet, but offensively very diverse."

The Aggies have a new field general this fall in Miles Hastings who currently leads the Big Sky in passing with 1,041 yards and eight touchdowns, but the guy at the top of Montana State’s scouting report isn’t No. 7, it’s their running back Ulonzo Gilliam Jr.

The senior was selected as this year’s preseason offensive MVP, and is living up to the title, leading the Big Sky in rushing with 365 yards and two touchdowns.

“[Ulonzo] Gilliam Jr. is probably as good an offensive player right now as there is in the league," Vigen stated.

Defensively, Rex Connors is a fresh face that’s been making noise for the Aggies at defensive back.

The redshirt freshman leads the team in both tackles and interceptions, a challenge bobcat quarterback Sean Chambers is preparing for as he gets ready for his first start this Saturday.

“They give you a lot of different looks, multiple fronts - a defense that we haven’t seen in a few weeks now," Vigen explained. "An adjustment on that end. We’re going to have to play well to win. There’s no denying that, and this will be a great challenge for us.”

Montana State versus UC Davis kicks off under the lights Saturday at 8:15 p.m. MT on ESPNU.