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Second chances: Montana State prepares for second-round meeting against Weber State

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Posted at 3:03 PM, Dec 02, 2022

BOZEMAN — Life doesn’t always present second chances, but when it does, it’s what you make of those moments.

For Weber State, Saturday marks another opportunity to come to Bobcat Stadium for a rematch against Montana State, but it’s also a second chance for the Bobcats to clean up some of their Week 8 mistakes.

“The way that game played out I would assume they see themselves differently here in December, and I know we do as well," head coach Brent Vigen stated during Monday's presser. "You try to look at the things we did well. The things that we maybe allowed them to do well, and you try to correct as many of those things as you can – and understand that they’re a good team, we’re a good team, and we still have to go out there and put our guys in the best position to play well.”

Their meeting back in October was no doubt one of the most bizarre games, arguably ever in Bobcat Stadium.

Four safeties – all scored by bad snaps out of the endzone, which did cement a new FCS record.

Those eight points gave Montana State a 43-38 edge over the Wildcats, but there’s no denying the fact that special team woes were also an issue for the Bobcats.

“We can’t let their special teams go for touchdowns like they did against us," Vigen said. "I think since then in the last 15 quarters we’ve really covered kicks and punts well. That first quarter giving them two scores probably opened our eyes as much as anything. We have to find a way in special teams to gain an edge, and then offensively continue to build upon what we’ve been doing really all season.”

The Wildcats got a taste of Montana State's running game in Week 8 — specifically from Tommy Mellott who rushed for a career-high 273 yards — but what they didn’t get taste of was his partner in crime Sean Chambers.

Saturday will be Weber State’s first brush with the Bobcats two-quarterback system, but most notably, this will also mark the return of All-American running back Isaiah Ifanse.

“This has been a long process," Vigen stated. "He’s healthy now, and I know we’re really excited to insert him into what we’ve been doing. I think he’ll certainly give us something we haven’t had. He’s just different.”

On the flip side, Weber State will also have a new face in their back field.

Josh Davis missed October’s game as well with an injury, but rushed for 80 yards in the Wildcats regular season finale and posted 129 yards and two touchdowns last Saturday against North Dakota.

“They have such a stable of backs," he added. "They’ve run four different guys, and they’ve all had a level of success… He’s very dynamic, versatile. [Damon] Bankston and [Dontae] McMillan - those guys are, too.”

Montana State versus Weber State kicks off at 1 p.m. MT, which will be streamed on ESPN+.