Elevated Expectations

ELEVATED EXPECTATIONS: Bobcat TEs expecting more opportunities in 2021

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Editor’s Note: This is the first installment in Skyline Sports’ ELEVATED EXPECTATIONseries profiling Bobcat football players and position groups likely to see elevated roles this season for Montana State.

BOZEMAN, Montana — It’s not as if Jeff Choate did not favor playing tight ends. In fact, Choate and his string of offensive coordinators played as many snaps with multiple tight ends on the field as anybody in the Big Sky Conference.

The Bobcat tight ends just hardly ever touched the football, particularly in the red-zone.

Conner Sullivan, a converted wide receiver from Ennis, caught 29 passes for 387 yards and just one touchdown despite starting for the first three years of Choate’s tenure as Montana State’s head football coach from 2016 until 2018.

That’s as many touchdown catches as Wilson Brott, a converted offensive tackle who served as MSU’s “heavy” tight end in short-yardage situations, caught among his two career receptions.

Curtis Amos, who primarily served as Montana State’s H-back style tight end, caught six passes for 56 yards in his career despite coming to MSU as a highly touted pass-catching tight end who averaged 20 yards per catch and caught nine touchdowns during his senior year at Centennial High in Burleson, Texas.

Amos, Brott and Sullivan frequently played, often times next to at least one of the other two, and frequently all three would play at once. But balls were hard to come by for an offense that provided limited opportunities in the pass game across the board.

For example, senior Ryan Davis, a 6-foot-3, 265-pounder out of Billings, has started the last two seasons, yet hasn’t caught a pass since his senior year at Billings Skyview.

During the Choate era, tight ends caught a total of 59 passes in four seasons. Jason Scrempos, a defensive tackle caught as many touchdowns (two) as Austin Barth, Sullivan, Amos and Brott did in their cumulative careers.

That’s a far cry from about a decade-long stretch that saw Montana State roll out a string of some of the best tight ends in the Big Sky Conference. From Blake Wolf and Brandon Bostick during the Mike Kramer years to Kyle Begger, Steven Foster, Tiai Salanoa and Beau Sandland during Rob Ash’s tenure, Montana State landed seven tight ends on the Big Sky’s first or second-team all-conference offenses between 2004 and 2015.

Editor’s Note: This is the first installment in Skyline Sports’ ELEVATED EXPECTATIONseries profiling Bobcat football players and position groups likely to see elevated roles this season for Montana State.

BOZEMAN, Montana — It’s not as if Jeff Choate did not favor playing tight ends. In fact, Choate and his string of offensive coordinators played as many snaps with multiple tight ends on the field as anybody in the Big Sky Conference.

The Bobcat tight ends just hardly ever touched the football, particularly in the red-zone.

Conner Sullivan, a converted wide receiver from Ennis,
caught 29 passes for 387 yards and just one touchdown despite starting for the
first three years of Choate’s tenure as Montana State’s head football coach
from 2016 until 2018.

That’s as many touchdown catches as Wilson Brott, a converted offensive tackle who served as MSU’s “heavy” tight end in short-yardage situations, caught among his two career receptions.

Curtis Amos, who primarily served as Montana State’s H-back
style tight end, caught six passes for 56 yards in his career despite coming to
MSU as a highly touted pass-catching tight end who averaged 20 yards per catch
and caught nine touchdowns during his senior year at Centennial High in
Burleson, Texas.

Amos, Brott and Sullivan frequently played, often times next to at least one of the other two, and frequently all three would play at once. But balls were hard to come by for an offense that provided limited opportunities in the pass game across the board.

For example, senior Ryan Davis, a 6-foot-3, 265-pounder out of Billings, has started the last two seasons, yet hasn't caught a pass since his senior year at Billings Skyview.

During the Choate era, tight ends caught a total of 59 passes in four seasons. Jason Scrempos, a defensive tackle caught as many touchdowns (two) as Austin Barth, Sullivan, Amos and Brott did in their cumulative careers.

That’s a far cry from about a decade-long stretch that saw Montana State roll out a string of some of the best tight ends in the Big Sky Conference. From Blake Wolf and Brandon Bostick during the Mike Kramer years to Kyle Begger, Steven Foster, Tiai Salanoa and Beau Sandland during Rob Ash’s tenure, Montana State landed seven tight ends on the Big Sky’s first or second-team all-conference offenses between 2004 and 2015.

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Photos by Brooks Nuanez. All Rights Reserved.

About Colter Nuanez

Colter Nuanez is the co-founder and senior writer for Skyline Sports. After spending six years in the newspaper industry with stops at the Missoulian, the Ellensburg Daily Record and the Bozeman Daily Chronicle, the former Washington Newspaper Association Sportswriter of the Year and University of Montana Journalism School graduate ('09) has cultivated a deep passion for sports journalism during his 13-year career covering the Big Sky Conference. In August of 2014, Colter and brother Brooks merged their passions of writing and art to found Skyline Sports.

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