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Griz face EWU at home


The Montana Grizzlies have a big, Big Sky Conference opener this Saturday in Missoula. The Montana State Bobcats have a week to get ready for theirs.

The biggest showdown in the FCS this weekend takes place in Missoula when the 12th-ranked Grizzlies (0-0, 1-1) welcome in the 10th-ranked Eastern Washington Eagles (0-0, 0-2) – the reigning FCS national champions Saturday afternoon at Washington-Grizzly Stadium.

And while it appears the Eagles are reeling, having lost two straight to open the season, and now having to go on the road to Montana, it's still EWU and the Eagles are still the most dangerous offensive team in the Big Sky.

Eastern lost a shocking game at South Dakota last weekend after nearly upsetting Washington two weeks ago. But the Eagles, with quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell and a bevy of big receivers are the most dangerous passing attack in the FCS. Montana will counter with sophomore quarterback Jordan Johnson and wide receiver Jabin Sambrano. On defense, the new Grizzly secondary will play a huge role in Saturday's game, which is a revenge game for last year's loss in Cheney, Wash.

Meanwhile, things aren't quite as dramatic in Bozeman as the 5th-ranked Bobcats (0-0, 1-1) welcome in NCAA Division II transition school Minot State. The outcome will likely not be in doubt for the Bobcats, but they certainly won't take the Beavers lightly, especially with a huge showdown at EWU looming next week.

The Bobcats come into Saturday's game fresh off a successful home opener in which a new record crowd of 18,000-plus watch the Cats trounced future Big Sky member U.C Davis. Sophomore Cody Kirk, who bulldozed his way to 151 yards on the ground against the Aggies.

Minot State, an NCAA DII transition team will have a host of Montana-born players,

including C.J. Evans who is Minot's starting quarterback, while Nate Christianson plays at receiver and Mike Hickman is a defensive back and a special team's player.

The game between Montana State and Minot State will kick off at 1:35 p.m. in Bozeman Saturday. It can be seen statewide on Max Media. The game between Eastern Washington and Montana Saturday in Missoula is set to kick off at 1 p.m. and can be seen locally on KRTV Channel 2.


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