LOGAN – Immediately after Monday’s home win against NJIT, Utah State head coach Tim Duryea was talking about Idaho State. He still had another home game less than 48 hours away, but he talked about the next matchup against Bristol like it was in preparation for the Bengals.
He said the game against Idaho State Saturday night would be “very, very tough.”
The team from Pocatello, Idaho has played two games so far, both of them on the road. The first was an 11-point loss at New Mexico, the second was a 9-point loss to Utah Valley. Don’t let the 0-2 record fool you, Duryea said they stayed in both games most of the way.
“They are a team that is very impressive when you watch them,” Duryea said. “They have a lot of returners that played a lot for them last year.”
The Bengal player to watch Saturday night will likely be Ethan Telfair, a 6-foot-0 junior guard that played in every game and averaged more than 20 points a year ago, and 25 points in his two games this season. Duryea thinks that Telfair, who was once recruited by USU, may be the best guard in the Big Sky Conference. He said it will be up to USU guards Shane Rector and Koby McEwen to stop him.
“Both of those guys are very good on-ball defenders,” Duryea said. “But will have their hands full.”
Telfair is one of three guys that Duryea said are “carrying the load” for Idaho State. Six-foot-3 junior guard Geno Luzcando and 7-foot sophomore center Novak Topalovic are the other two. Both picked up a double-double against UVU. Luzcando had 20 points and 13 rebounds while Topalovic added 15 points and 16 rebounds.
Duryea said to expect Idaho State to play a “very unusual matchup zone.”
“They do it as well as anybody in the country,” he said.
The game will tip off at 7 p.m. in the Spectrum. It will be the last of three home games before the team travels to Cancun next week.