It’s already been a crazy season in the Big Sky.  Teams who were predicted to finish at the top have been flipped, improbable upsets have happened across the conference, and the race for the Big Sky Conference title is not over yet.  With only 2 more weeks to go, five teams are still in contention for the conference title… and Montana is still in contention.  Although Montana does control its own destiny for reaching the playoffs by winning the next two games, the team will need a little help elsewhere to have a chance at sharing the conference title.  And if the stars align and everything goes right, Montana will share the conference title with 4 other Big Sky teams.  Take a look at how Montana would get there:

Here are the standings of the top 5 teams that are still contending for the Big Sky title:

  1. Southern Utah (7-2, 6-0 BSC)
  2. Eastern Washington (6-3, 5-1 BSC)
  3. Portland State (7-2, 5-1 BSC)
  4. Northern Arizona (6-3, 4-2 BSC)
  5. Montana (5-4, 4-2 BSC)

Looking at these standings, the only way Montana gets a share of the title is if Southern Utah loses their next two games.  Let’s take a look at what needs to happen across the board for this scenario to happen.


Montana (5-4, 4-2 BSC) – Needs to win both remaining games to reach playoffs & possibly share conference title

  • W vs Eastern Washington (6-3, 5-1 BSC)
  • W @ Montana State (4-5, 2-4 BSC)

Final record would be (7-4, 6-2 BSC)

Southern Utah (7-2, 6-0 BSC) – Needs to lose both remaining games

  • L @ Portland State (7-2, 5-1 BSC)
  • L vs Northern Arizona (6-3, 4-2 BSC)

Final record would be (7-4, 6-2 BSC)

Eastern Washington (6-3, 5-1 BSC) – Can only lose to Montana to share title.

  • L @ Montana (5-4, 4-2 BSC)
  • W vs Portland State (7-2, 5-1 BSC)

Final record would be (7-4, 6-2 BSC)

Portland State (7-2, 4-2 BSC) – Can only lose 1 to share title.

  • W vs Southern Utah (7-2, 6-0 BSC)
  • L @ Eastern Washington (6-3, 5-1 BSC)

Final Record would be (8-3, 5-3 BSC)

Northern Arizona (6-3, 4-2 BSC) – Must win out to share title

  • W vs Sacramento State (2-7, 1-5 BSC)
  • W @ Southern Utah (7-2, 6-0 BSC)

Final Record would be (8-3, 6-2 BSC)


T1. Northern Arizona (8-3, 6-2 BSC)

T1. Eastern Washington (7-4, 6-2 BSC)

T1. Montana (7-4, 6-2 BSC)

T1. Southern Utah (7-4, 6-2 BSC)

2. Portland State (8-3, 5-3)


So based off of the scenario, the one constant that needs to happen is for Southern Utah to lose both their next two games.  If the scenario happens above, then the conference title will be shared between for teams: Montana, Southern Utah, Northern Arizona, and Eastern Washington/Portland State (This will be determined on whoever wins this matchup between the two.)  From there, the auto-bid to the playoffs needs to be determined, and that’s where the fun begins in a 13-team conference where every team doesn’t play each other (insane).

Here’s the rules for determining the outright auto bid winner when multiple teams share the title:

  1. Head to head (including non-conference games against conference opponents)
  2. Common opponents starting at the top of the conference (including non-conference games against conference opponents)
  3. Common non-conference opponents
  4. Sagarins

So with a 4-way tie, Montana could win the auto bid into the playoffs thanks to the head-to-head matchups if Eastern Washington beats Portland State to end the season,  (Portland State Beat Montana, Eastern WA beats Portland State, Montana beats Eastern WA).

The last two weeks could turn out to be a wild one.  Although this scenario may not happen, buckle up and enjoy the ride.  Montana still needs to take care of business on its end and hope everything else lines up in their favor.  It all starts this Saturday against Eastern Washington.  Show up, get crazy, and let’s get this win!

Go Griz!!