Week three of the Big Sky Conference season is come and gone and it was a Big Sky blood bath. The conference did not fare so well in its play-up games against FBS opponents, despite a couple of good efforts. Montana had arguably the toughest match-up of the week by taking on Oregon in the Autzen Zoo. The Ducks showed why they have earned their ranking and Justin Herbert is a playmaker. Idaho gave a good effort against Wyoming, and Mason Petrino is a decent quarterback for the Vandals. Weber State probably wishes they could have their game against Nevada back. Weber State had the Wolf Pack on the ropes but just couldn’t quite close it out.

Utah and Oregon State gave out beatings to Idaho State and Cal Poly respectively. Didn’t see Cal Poly getting beat so soundly against a fairly terrible Oregon State team. Off day for the Mustangs. Utah is a very physical football team, maybe the most physical in the Pac12, and no way Idaho State was going to keep up with Kyle Whittingham’s group.

Perhaps the most impressive win of the week was Montana State over Western Illinois on the road. The Bulldogs are a good team, despite their record. The Bobcats had a good rushing day from Logan Jones who also had a couple of touchdowns. Not sure the Bobcats have quite identified a quarterback yet, or if they ever will. However, it’s working for them because they’re 2-1 on the season. Jake Meier keeps piling up the stats, this time with a win at home over Lehigh. Meier has thrown for 921 yards and six touchdowns against two interceptions while completing 68 percent of his passes. Not too shabby of a season.

Onto the rest..

Scores

Montana 3
Oregon 35

Idaho 16
Wyoming 21

Idaho State 0
Utah 31

Portland State 10
Boise State 45

Eastern Washington 45
Jacksonville State 49

Montana State 23
Western Illinois 14

Cal Poly 7
Oregon State 45

Weber State 13
Nevada 19

Western New Mexico 21
Northern Arizona 55

Stephen F Austin 38
Southern Utah 45

Northern Colorado 0
Sacramento State 50

Lehigh 13
UC Davis 41

Big Sky Player of the Week

This week’s Big Sky player of the week is Montana State running back Logan Jones. Jones rushed 21 times for 167 yards and two touchdowns as the Bobcats defeated Western Illinois in Macomb this past weekend.

Big Sky MVP Candidates

Jake Meier, QB, UC Davis
Case Cookus, QB, Northern Arizona
Dalton Sneed, QB, Montana
Kevin Thomson, QB, Sacramento State
Eric Barriere, QB, Eastern Washington

Big Sky Power Rankings

UC Davis
Weber State
Eastern Washington
Montana State
Montana
Northern Arizona
Sacramento State
Cal Poly
Portland State
Southern Utah
Idaho
Idaho State
Northern Colorado

The Quad Shot

A lot of Big Sky blood spilled this week against FBS opponents. I thought Weber State had a legitimate shot at beating Nevada. After the Wolf Pack was absolutely rolled by Oregon last weekend I thought the Pack might come out a little soft and would be ripe for the picking. Weber State probably had a reasonable chance at winning that game if Jake Constantine had been playing, but injuries are a bummer like that. Montana gave a good fight to Oregon, I thought. The Ducks were more talented across the board but Montana did a fine job against an explosive team on both sides of the ball.

Eastern Washington.. man, that’s tough. Having that kind of lead and blowing in the fourth quarter. Then again, if we’re being real with ourselves that’s kind of the nature of Big Sky defenses.. hold on for dear life. Unfortunately for our friends to the west they didn’t hold on tight enough because Jacksonville State scored 21 points in the fourth quarter and snuck one past the Eagles.

Western Illinois doesn’t quite have the bite they did a year or two ago, but nice to see the Cats get a win over the Missouri Valley. Looking at the rest of the matchups the Big Sky has against the MVFC I’m not sure I see any other wins for the Big Sky over them. Seems like the Big Sky got a bad draw; pairing the conference’s weaker teams against the MVFCs stronger teams.. recipe for those fans of little humility to drag their conference’s bragging rights into another season.

In non-Big Sky news.. I have a bad feeling no one is going to knock off North Dakota State this season. I thought Delaware on the road would be a trap game for the Bison (no z, learn to spell). The Blue Hens are a formidable team this season, but just didn’t have the juice to catch the Bison sleeping on the road. Northern Iowa should be a good game, but the game is in the quonset hut in Fargo. South Dakota State could be a test on the road. After that.. not much there to challenge them.

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