Zack Hall
Arizona Daily Sun


If you weren’t convinced by the sold-out crowds at Washington-Grizzly Stadium each and every week that Montana football fans are a different breed than your normal Big Sky Conference fans, take a look at

There you will find an assortment of quips from Grizzly fans on nearly every subject related to their football team.

Here are a few random samplings:

Start with a little analysis about this week’s game by a Montana fan GeauxGriz out of Baton Rouge, La.:

NAU has one of the most talented teams in the Big Sky. With all the injuries that the Griz have right now, they may have just as much talent as the Griz. … if not more. They stack the box on D, which means that Johnny Montana will have to shoulder the burden this week. He may have to throw for 400 yards. NAU’s O is too talented to be shut out. They have playmakers. The Griz may have a let down after an emotional win last week. I think the “Heart-attack” Griz are back.

And don’t think Montana fans have forgotten about NAU coach Jerome Souers 12-year tenure in Missoula, mostly as the Grizzlies’ defensive coordinator, before taking the job with the Lumberjacks. Here’s a thought from cadwiz30:

Two tickets to the game — $40.00

“Beverages” — as much as it takes

Giving Jerome another reason to wish he stayed in Montana — priceless

Montana is ranked sixth in Here’s SpokaneGriz’s thoughts on the ranking:

“What an idiot! They use some “simple math” formula to calculate strength of schedule and the cumulative record of teams you have beaten, along with a “factor” based on how close your win was. … Sounds like a version of the BCS. And we all know how “good” that system is.”

In fact, on this Web site alone, there are more fans chiming in than NAU may have had last week in the Skydome to watch the game against Montana State. (Not the Griz fans would blame them. According to many of the entries, not many of them can stomach watching the Bobcats either).

At one time in the Big Sky Conference, Montana was rivaled and sometimes surpassed by Boise State, Nevada and Idaho with their fan base. It is no coincidence that those teams ruled the Big Sky for more than a decade.

But now with those three schools moving up to Division I-A (yes, Idaho is I-A, despite losing to Montana three straight times) the Griz are not only the best show in Montana, they are the only show in the Big Sky.

When you look at the nearly 20,000 fans that pack into Washington-Grizzly — the gem of the Big Sky — each Saturday and the rabidness of their fans, you can understand why the Griz have no peers in the conference. And why they have the nation’s longest win streak at 22 games and a 23-game conference win streak.

Until a school earns the following the Griz do, the Big Sky will always be Montana’s conference. But that day is nowhere near, so for the foreseeable future, the Big Sky football championship will be won or lost in Missoula.