We post the Cat-Griz Insider Mailbag every Thursday during the football season. If you have a question pertaining to the Cats, the Griz or the Big Sky Conference, hit us up on Twitter -- @CatGrizInsider or @SlimKimmel -- or email Greg at firstname.lastname@example.org.
* How many players on both (UM and MSU) rosters are from Montana? -- Justin (@jlpearce)
This is always a point of contention between Cats and Griz fans. Which team has more homegrown players is a big point of pride. The count this year? Montana State: 46, Montana: 39.
For years, Montana usually had a leg-up over the Bobcats in recruiting in-state players, primarily because the Griz were going deep into the playoffs while MSU was in rebuilding mode. But ever since Rob Ash came to Bozeman it has become an all-out war between the schools to secure the best local talent. Expect it to continue.
* What's going on with the Griz safeties? Will we see more of Lebsock? Gamboa?? -- Paul (@PaulDMorton)
Coach Mick Delaney has stated his desire for depth in the secondary throughout the early part of this season, but backups Connor Lebsock, Steven Rominger and Herbert Gamboa have played sparingly so far. Their most playing time came when the score was pretty well in hand two weeks ago against Liberty. All are young though: Lebsock and Rominger and redshirt freshmen and Gamboa is a true frosh. So it’s probably good that they’re being worked in slowly.
There has been some concern about the play of starters Matt Hermanson and Bo Tully to this point. The Griz have been beaten with deep passes a number of times, and the safety help in the run game against Northern Arizona last week was spotty. There is a ton of hype surrounding Hermanson, and he has the talent to live up to it. UM’s safeties will be tested again this week at Eastern Washington. Let’s see how they respond.
* Is there any hope of catching the Cats on TV against Southern Utah or UC Davis if I don't have Root? -- Leif (@leifwickland)
Sorry. Root has exclusive broadcast rights to the games, and that’s the only place to watch. Your best bet is to go to a sports bar or a friend’s house.
As for Root’s broadcast debut last week, it got great reviews. By all accounts, the high-definition picture, sound, camera work, play-by-play and analysis were well received by viewers. And they’ll get a double-dose of it this week as Root will televise its first doubleheader -- Montana State at Southern Utah and Montana at Eastern Washington.
* The Griz have been outscored by a compiled score of 69-42 in the 2nd half this year. Not making adjustments. -- Brint (@BWahlberg)
Those numbers have to be a bit concerning to UM fans. Last week was a prime example, as Northern Arizona rarely deviated from running Zach Bauman off-tackle to the right but gained big chunks of yards virtually every time.
Making adjustments at halftime and on the fly in the second half is a huge part of coaching football. It can make or break games, as we saw last week. The reason for Montana’s issues? I’m not totally sure. Perhaps it has something to do with a first-year head coach (Mick Delaney) still trying to mesh with first-year offensive (Timm Rosenbach) and defensive (Ty Gregorak) coordinators.