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MONTANA STATE PLAYERS TO WATCH 13 — Elijah Elliott — RB Elliott has made impactful plays whenever he takes the field. He rushed for 31 yards on four carries last week at Weber State. Considering Montana State will likely be ahead early, Elliott might receive plenty of carries as the Bobcats seek to control time of possession. 44 — Daniel Hardy — DE Against Weber State, Hardy totaled a season-best eight tackles, three sacks and forced a fumble en route to Big Sky defensive player of the week honors. If ISU trails and passes more to catch up, Hardy will have a chance at more explosive plays. 0 — Tyrel Thomas — DB Thomas has played a few games since recovering from knee surgery before the season. As the Bobcats hope to maintain depth at cornerback, Thomas’ presence could be important. With one interception this season, he has a chance to make more impactful plays this week. IDAHO STATE PLAYERS TO WATCH 80 — Tanner Conner — WR While multiple quarterbacks have played for the Bengals, Conner has found a way to be ISU’s leading receiver. He’s caught 19 passes for 363 yards and three touchdowns. The Bengals may continue to lean on the 6-foot-3, 235-pound senior, especially if the Bobcats are up early. 0 — Xavier Guillory — WR The Bobcats will need to watch out for multiple ISU receiving threats. Guillory, a 6-2, 220-pound freshman, has caught 17 passes for 228 yards and a TD. If MSU focuses too much on slowing down ISU’s rushing attack or its other receivers, Guillory could take advantage. 2 — Jayden Dawson — CB Dawson, a 5-10, 185-pound junior, has made impacts in multiple ways for the Bengals. He’s third on the team with 35 tackles, two for loss, but he also leads ISU with nine pass breakups. He also intercepted a pass and returned it 61 yards and forced a fumble. KEY FACTS - Montana State has won six straight times against Idaho State in Bobcat Stadium. The Bengals won the most recent meeting 24-17 in Pocatello, Idaho, in 2018. - MSU’s 13-7 win over Weber State last week marked the fewest points scored by the Bobcats in a win since a 7-3 victory over Southern Utah in 2007. Their nine first downs stand as the fewest in a victory since totaling that many against Stephen F. Austin in 1994. - Daniel Hardy is fifth in the FCS in tackles for loss (1.9 per game) and eighth in sacks (1.14 per game). His 13.5 tackles-for-loss total is 4.5 from MSU’s career top-10 list, and with eight sacks he’s two away from 10th on the school’s single-season list. -Freshman kicker Blake Glessner scored seven points in MSU’s 13-7 win, two of his four kickoffs pinned Weber State inside its own 25-yard line, and he has now connected on 10 consecutive field goals, four shy of the Bobcat record. - Idaho State lost 31-10 at Portland State last week, its fifth consecutive road loss. - Five of freshman Bryce Leighton’s eight punts last week forced Weber State’s star returner, Rashid Shaheed, into five fair catches. - Matthew McKay scored his first rushing touchdown as a Bobcat last week at Weber State. - MSU has held all seven of its opponents to less than 20 points, 355 total yards and 20 first downs. The Bobcats are 18th in the FCS in rushing defense (108.3 yards per game), eighth in passing yards allowed (161.6 per game), eighth in total defense (269.9 yards per game) and third in scoring defense (10.6 points per game). THE BOTTOM LINE After a lackluster offensive performance at Weber State, Montana State will be eager to bounce back. The Bobcats have a favorable opportunity to do so against a struggling Idaho State squad. MSU should be scoring early and often in this game. The Bobcats’ defense should also thrive, as it has almost all season. MSU has a chance to enter its bye week, before facing two ranked opponents in its last three regular season games, on a seven-game winning streak. The Bobcats are in a good position to do so. Pool’s pick: Montana State 55, Idaho State 14

KEY FACTS

THE BOTTOM LINE

After a lackluster offensive performance at Weber State, Montana State will be eager to bounce back. The Bobcats have a favorable opportunity to do so against a struggling Idaho State squad. MSU should be scoring early and often in this game.

The Bobcats’ defense should also thrive, as it has almost all season. MSU has a chance to enter its bye week, before facing two ranked opponents in its last three regular season games, on a seven-game winning streak. The Bobcats are in a good position to do so.

Pool’s pick: Montana State 55, Idaho State 14

Colton Pool can be reached at cpool@dailychronicle.com or 406-582-2690. Follow him on Twitter @CPoolReporter.

Colton Pool can be reached at cpool@dailychronicle.com or 406-582-2690. Follow him on Twitter @CPoolReporter.

This article originally ran on bozemandailychronicle.com.

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