BOZEMAN — After spending two weeks on the sideline dealing with a concussion, Montana State’s Tommy Mellott will return to action this Saturday against Northern Colorado.
However, during his absence, it’s no secret Sean Chambers took control of this Bobcat offense, which warrants the question: what will this two-quarterback system look like going forward?
That’s a question Montana State is also trying to answer, but one thing that is clear is Tommy Mellot will get the start on Saturday.
“Like I said before, he’s going to play and our idea would be to start him," Bobcats head coach Brent Vigen stated during Monday's presser. "You know, he hasn’t practiced in weeks now, so I think we need to see continued progress now with practice... but that would be the ideal.”
While that was Montana State's 'idea' at the time, all it took was 24 hours for it to become official on their two-deep, which was listed Tuesday with Mellott returning to the top on their depth chart.
Now, how will the Bobcats utilize him and Sean Chambers? Vigen didn’t really have an answer, but here’s what he shared Thursday on Bobcat Insider:
“You know, certainly getting Tommy [Mellott] back in there and utilizing all his abilities, and then I think Sean [Chambers] has obviously grown through these past couple weeks to be able to use all the things he’s continued to get better at as well. Hopefully, [we’ll] keep defenses really off balance with the both of them.”
With Northern Colorado losing more than 30 players to the transfer portal this offseason, their defense only returned three starters this fall – one of which is an all-American, but to their luck hasn’t played a single snap all season.
Linebacker David Hoage was the team’s lone all-conference selection in the preseason but suffered an injury before week one that’s held him out indefinitely.
However, redshirt sophomore Elijah Anderson-Taylor has answered the call in his place, recording at least 10 tackles in five straight games leading the Big Sky with 62.
“They’ve shown a lot of different looks over the course of the season, too," Vigen stated Monday. "I know that’s always a challenge in your preparation, so it’s a situation where we can’t take anything for granted.”
Offensively, Sacramento State transfer Elijah Dotson has been a welcome addition this fall leading the Bears in rushing with 353 yards and 3 touchdowns.
"He’s certainly not a one-dimensional guy and can catch it out of the backfield as well,' Vigen added. "Runs hard, so he’s typically a guy that you need a couple of guys to rally to him to get him down.”
Additionally, something different the Bears have toyed around with this fall is also utilizing a two-quarterback system of their own with Dylan McCaffrey and Central Michigan transfer Jacob Sirmon.
“I do think they’re similar enough where their offense doesn’t have to take these big swings to accommodate either one of them," Vigen explained. "They might be able to make a few different throws or whatever, but it’s not like they’re so different physically that we have to have two different game plans.”
Montana State versus Northern Colorado kicks off in Greeley Saturday at 1 p.m., which will be televised on the Montana Television Network.