Nov 022006
Authors: Matt Pucak

One missed exhibition was OK, but Jason Smith was not going to sit out of another one.

All-Mountain West Conference forward Jason Smith will be suiting up for the first time for the Rams this season, in their match-up against Concordia-Montreal tonight.

Smith, who sat out the Rams’ 69-53 victory Tuesday night against Regis with tendonitis in his ankle and foot, is ready to get back out on the court.

“I’m excited to play and get those preseason jitters out of the way,” he said after practice Thursday.

Rams Head Coach Dale Layer says his team needs to focus on improvement after their struggles with Regis, a Division II team.

“We need to keep improving, especially on defense. We also need to improve our execution, as against Regis we didn’t execute well,” he said.

Layer also added that having Jason Smith back is a great addition to the team.

“Jason is a very important piece to out team, and we need to continue to work with him on the floor in game situations,” Layer said.

The Concordia-Montreal Stingers are a Canadian school that went 20-15 last season, with seven of those losses coming to Division I teams, including losses to Connecticut and Duke.

CSU will again be without the services of two junior college transfers at guard, as Tyler Smith serves the second game of his suspension and Tim Denson sits out with an injured groin. The good news on the injury front is that freshman Ryan Vermeulen is expected to play after sitting out the first game.

Smith says the team this year is focused on discipline, as was highlighted by their tough and physical practice Thursday.

“Our goal this year is to have high discipline, so when hard situations come up, we have our discipline to fall back on.”

Basketball beat writer Matt Pucak can be reached at

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