BILLINGS – Rocky Mountain College beat Southern Oregon the first year the Raiders joined the Frontier Conference in 2012 but hasn’t done it since.
The Battlin’ Bears have come close, losing to SOU by a single point each of the past two seasons, but it will be an even tougher test Saturday. Southern Oregon comes in ranked No. 2 in the country and a favorite to reach its third national title game in five years.
For years, the Raiders’ m.o. was to simply outscore teams, routinely averaging 50 points per game. But this year’s group does it with defense, especially up front.
“They’ve got eight guys that play in the D-line, and they just come in bunches,” said Rocky head coach Jason Petrino. “It’s like hockey. They’ve got four new guys coming off the boards. Just when you think you get a first down to try to wear out a D-Line, they’ve got four new guys coming in, and they all can play.”
So how does Rocky’s offensive line plan to stop them? Left tackle John Boogaard said they have to think deeper.
“How are my feet going to be? What’s my posture? Where are my hands? That kind of stuff,” said Boogaard about blocking Southern Oregon’s rush. “If you go out and say, ‘Oh, I’m going to block this guy. I’m going to dominate him,’ that’s never going to work. You got to go out and do your job and really focus on the little things.”
No. 21 Rocky hosts Southern Oregon at 1 p.m. Saturday at Herb Klindt Field.