It’s been a big week for Montana State University senior defensive end Brad Daly. And it’s all because of the huge season Daly just finished last month.
On Tuesday, Daly, the former Helena Capitol star, was named the Buck Buchanen Award winner for the 2013 season. The award is given to the top defensive player from the Football Championship Subdivision. Daly became the second straight Montana State star to win the award. Caleb Schreibeis won the award in 2012.
Daly, who has also been named to every FCS All-American Team there is this week, finished the regular season with an FCS-best 14 sacks and 20.5 tackles for loss. He totaled 61 tackles on the season, and for his efforts, was named Big Sky Conference Co-Defensive Player of the Year.
Daly’s honors this season also include being named an FCS First-Team All-American by both The Sports Network and the Associated Press. The TSN All-American Team and the AP All-American Team are the FCS’s most recognizable two All-American lists each season.
The Montana Grizzlies also had two All-Americans named on Wednesday. Senior linebacker Jordan Tripp, who was also a Buck Buchanen nominee this season, was named First-Team linebacker by the AP and Second-Team by TSN. Senior offensive tackle Danny Kistler Jr. was named First-Team OL by the AP and Third-Team by TSN. Both Tripp and Kistler Jr. are repeat All-Americans. MSU junior running back Shawn Johnson was also named an All-American Return Specialist by the AP.
Other FCS awards handed out this week included Eastern Illinois quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo being named the 2013 Walter Payton Award winner and Eastern Washington freshman wide receiver Cooper Kupp earning the Jerry Rice Award as the FCS’ top freshman.
Meanwhile, the Montana Grizzlies announced their 2014 schedule on Thursday afternoon.
Montana will open the season at Wyoming on Aug. 30 in Laramie. The Cowboys are an FBS member of the Mountain West Conference. In 13 tries, the Griz have never beaten UW. The two border schools haven’t met since the 1997 season. The Griz will also play a road game at two-time defending FCS champion North Dakota State on Sept. 20. The Bison are vying for a third straight FCS championship this season. UM has never played at the Fargo Dome, and hasn’t played NDSU since the 2003 season when the Bison were still a member of the NCAA Division II. The game is part of a home-and-home series between the two FCS powers. UM will host NDSU in 2015. Montana’s home-opener is set for Sept. 6 against NCAA DII Central Washington, and the Griz will stay home to face South Dakota on Sept. 13.
Montana’s Big Sky Conference schedule includes home games with Northern Colorado (Sept. 27), UC Davis (Oct. 18) and Sacramento State (Nov. 1). UM plays a brutal road schedule which includes a third straight trip to the University of North Dakota (Oct. 4), as well as visits to Big Sky contenders Cal Poly (Oct. 25), EWU (Nov. 8) and Southern Utah (Nov. 15). Montana’s bye week is Oct. 11, while the Griz close out the season with the 114th Brawl of the Wild against Montana State Nov. 22 in Missoula.