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Courtesy: David Barfield
Kats on ESPN
Courtesy: Gene Schallenberg/Huntsville Item
Release: 12/07/2011
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As Sam Houston continues to implement its game plan throughout the week, the Bearkats are also preparing to play in front of their biggest audience of the season.

Plenty of eyes will be on Saturday's quarterfinal playoff game between Sam Houston and Montana State, which will be played at 11 a.m., with ESPN will televise the contest. With the only other TV game being the Army-Navy game, the national spotlight will be on Huntsville and the Bearkats.

"I think it's outstanding exposure for the university, for Huntsville and for our football program, in particular," Fritz said. "It's a tremendous honor. I told our guys that they ought to be proud, but when the game begins - we've been on TV quite a few times this year - it won't be a distraction for us.

"The game time is a little different. It's earlier than we've played on a Saturday. I sure like the fact that we're sleeping in our own beds. We'll be doing our same routine, just a few hours earlier."

The decision of kickoff, however, wasn't up to Fritz or his staff. Rather, it was left up to ESPN as to which quarterfinal contest would fill that designated time slot.

"ESPN made the decision. We submit times that we would like to play, but they made the decision based on what they think is best for their network," Fritz said.

The only other quarterfinal game that will be nationally televised also features two teams on the Bearkats' side of the bracket. Northern Iowa and Montana will play Friday night in Missoula, Mont., on ESPN at 7 p.m. CST.

"Really, I think either (time slot) is fine. (Playing on Saturday) gives us a full week of preparation," Fritz added.

General admission tickets priced at $15 are still available on line at or can be purchased at the SHSU athletic ticket office located in the Ron Mafrige Field House at Bowers Stadium.

Sam Houston State students may purchase tickets at the discounted rate of $5 each thanks to the contributions of local Huntsville and Conroe area businesses.

The ticket office is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. The ticket office telephone is (936) 294-1729.

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