Utah State men's basketball (0-1) will host Montana State (1-0) in the 2017-18 home opener on Monday, Nov. 13, at 7 p.m.
Utah State will begin its 48th season of playing in the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum and has compiled an overall mark of 562-136 (.805) over that span.
Utah State is 51-9 (.850) in home openers since 1957-58 and have won 23 straight, dating back to the 1993-94 season.
The Utah State/Montana State series is the third-longest in USU history, dating back to the 1913-14 season. The teams have played a total of 116 games, with the Aggies leading the all-time series, 76-40. USU has won seven of the last 10 against the Bobcats.
Utah State has recorded double-digit wins at home in each of the last 23 seasons, including five straight 17-win seasons at home from 2007-2012. Utah State finished the 2016-17 regular season with a 10-5 record at home, marking its 35th consecutive season with a winning record at home.
Montana State will be the first of three teams that Utah State will face this year that includes former Aggies. MSU senior forward Konner Frey played for Utah State during the 2014-15 season.
Montana State is the last non-conference opponent that Utah State has faced three times during a season. The teams met three times during the 2001-02 season. Utah State beat the Bobcats twice during the regular season, but lost to MSU in the first round of the NIT.
Utah State has several ties to the Montana State roster. MSU senior forward Konner Frey played for the Aggies during the 2014-15 season, appearing in four games and averaging 2.5 minutes and 0.8 rebounds per game. MSU sophomore center Devin Kirby was high school teammates of current Aggie Klay Stall at Basha High School in Chandler, Ariz.
Scouting Montana State
Montana State, picked fourth in the Big Sky in the preseason, opened its 2017-18 campaign with an 89-80 overtime victory over Omaha. Sophomore guard Harald Frey led the Bobcats with 29 points, nine rebounds and two steals, and was joined in double figures by junior guard Tyler Hall (19) and junior forward Keljin Blevins (17).
Hall and Frey are the top two returning scorers for MSU from last season, as Hall led the Bobcats with 23.1 points per game, followed by Frey with 12.7 points per game. Montana State finished the 2016-17 season with an overall mark of 16-16, including an 11-7 mark in the Big Sky. MSU averaged 80.0 points per game, shooting 43.5 percent (857-of-1,968) from the floor, 37.5 percent (320-of-853) from behind the 3-point line and 73.0 percent (527-of-722) at the free throw line.
Defensively, teams averaged 79.1 points per game against the Bobcats, shooting 44.9 percent (815-of-1,816) from the floor, 37.5 percent (263-of-702) from behind the 3-point line and 71.0 percent at the charity stripe. Hall led the team with team highs of both 12 blocks and 34 steals during the year.
Head coach Brian Fish is in his fourth year in Bozeman, guiding Montana State to an overall mark of 37-56.
Opening with the Sky
Utah State will face teams from the Big Sky Conference in three of its first five games of the year. The Aggies opened at Weber State on Nov. 10, will play Montana State on Monday, Nov. 13, and then face Portland State in Portland on Monday, Nov. 20.
Opening on the Road
Utah State will play six of its first eight games on the road, including a stretch of five straight from Nov. 18-28. The Aggies will be on the road for a total of 13 consecutive days during the five-game stretch with games at Gonzaga, Portland State and Valparaiso, and neutral-site games against Northeastern and New Hampshire in Nashville, Tenn.
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