Montana Men’s Basketball Preview (part 2)

This is the second part of my two part series looking at the Montana State women’s basketball program players. In this post I am looking at the front court players that included the power forward (4) and the center (5). .

Front Court (power forward and center)
The Griz have a solid three person front court rotation in Qvale, Selvig and Ward, but they are going to need to develop a little more depth by the time conference rolls around.

Brian Qvale 6-11 (C)
Qvale is one of the best true big men I have seen in the Big Sky in many years. He has great footwork and mobility underneath that along with his size can make him unstoppable. His biggest and best games came against the better competition last season. His performance in the NCAA tourney last year out standing. The problem is that at times he can just disappear in other games. Qvale does tend to have problems against smaller, athletic centers, but I think Tinkle need to get him more help in those situations this year. I look for a big senior year this year.

Derek Selvig 7-0 (PF, C)
Selvig has a combination of shooting, passing, ball handling, defensive skills all wrapped in a very mobile seven foot frame that we seldom see in the Big Sky Conference. Despite this he has been hampered by injuries the past two seasons that really hurt his development. I would like to see Selvig be a little more aggressive in the post where he and Qvale could make a great 1, 2 power punch. He should start at the power forward spot, and play some at the center spot. If his conditioning is back and he stays healthy the Griz could have the best front line in the conference.

Mathias Ward 6-7 (PF)
The only other Griz big man with any college experience will be counted on to play major minutes this season. He coming off a decent freshman campaign but the Griz are hoping for a lot more off him this year. Ward is solid scorer and good rebounder, and a big upside. He should be the first big man off the bench and I think an offensive spark as well.

Eric Hutchison 6-9 (PF, C)
Hutchison is coming off a redshirt freshman year and the Griz hope he can provide some solid minutes off the bench. Hutchison is not quite as offensive player either Ward or Reader but he is more of a complete player than either. Physically he is bigger than booth and a better rebounder.

Billy Reader 6-9 (PF, C)
Reader has the biggest up side of Ward, Hutchison and himself. He has 6-9 frame but the agility and lateral movement of a smaller player. In high school he could be a very explosive scorer and big time rebounder. He was though inconsistent. From whom I have talked to he still could use a little refining, and would benefit from a redshirt year under Tinkle. He could challenge Hutchison for the 4th big man.

Michael Weisner 6-7 (SF,PF)
Weisner, is truly a unique player for the Griz. I think he will eventually play the small forward spot for the Griz, but I think could really benefit from a redshirt year. He has excellent three point range, a good passer and good ball skills for a 6-7 player. Still though it may take a player like this a little longer to adjust to the D-1 level. If he does play this year though I could see him contributing from the power forward spot, this year.

Taylor Farnsworth 6-8 (PF, C)
Farnsworth is a walk-on who I admittedly do not know a lot about, but with the depth the Griz have this year I have to imagine that he will redshirt. I just do not see earning any significant minutes this year.

While it is too soon to put anything in stone this is how I see the players right now. Things will change once practice gets underway.

Projected Starters

Point Guard Shawn Stockton
Shooting Guard Will Cherry
Small Forward Art Steward
Power Forward Derek Selvig
Center Brian Qvale

Projected Bench
Mathias Ward
Kareem Jamar
Chase Adams
Jordon Wood

Players Looking to Establish Themselves
Eric Hutchison
Billy Reader
Vaughn Autry

Projected redshirt
Michael Weisner
Taylor Farnsworth


6 Responses to “Montana Men’s Basketball Preview (part 2)”

  1. 1 Chuck
    September 21, 2010 at 4:52 pm

    I threw Kavario Middleton’s name out there on egriz. I have not heard any talk of him wanting to play BBall at Montana but he has been quoted in the past as loving the sport.
    I was on the sidelines for warmups at the Griz- Western State football game and Middleton clearly has an NBA body. 6-6 250 and is a hell of an athlete. His past work ethic however has been lousy and he did get booted from the Huskies.

  2. 2 Grizhoops
    September 17, 2010 at 3:16 pm

    I think you underestimate the impact Autry will have this year. I think he will play major minutes and possibly start by the time conference begins.

    • September 17, 2010 at 3:40 pm

      I knew I would get that comment. I tend to down play true freshman a little bit on purpose. I would then ask you if you figure the Griz will have 5 players in the regular 1,2,3 rotation who are they?

      • 4 Grizhoops
        September 18, 2010 at 10:36 am

        Remove Wood or Stockton, insert Autry…….also, I doubt Farnsworth redshirts unless the Griz see a huge down the road upside. He is a walk on.

      • September 18, 2010 at 2:13 pm

        Most walk-ons redshirt freshman there first year. Unless I am really missing something Farnsworth is a long term project, who the odds are against him making it to the D-1 level. Typically D-1 coaches will redhsirt these players, it does not cost the program anything to do so, and they get an extra body to practice it. After their first year the program and athlete should no if he will make it. If not he can transfer and still have all four year to play.

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