MISSOULA – Montana often suits up a defensive line full of playmakers, but traditionally the Grizzlies have lacked some size. Teams have taken a bite out of the Griz up the middle at times, so one of their new additions has fit into a big role perfectly.

Maryland transfer David Shaw keeps showing up in highlights for UM. It’s hard to miss the junior. He stands 6-foot-5 and 319 pounds.

Shaw brings Big 10 playing experience, a big body, and a knack for finding the ball. And he is loving the chance to make a difference in maroon and silver.

Story continues below

“I feel great. It’s fun. Everyone has enthusiasm. Everybody accepted me,” said Shaw. “It’s just, opportunity to play is amazing. I feel like I can hold down the middle pretty good. I mean, I’ve got some size on me, obviously. I’ve got experience playing against bigger guys, so I know some good techniques.”

“Dave’s a baller. He’s added a lot,” said senior defensive end Tucker Schye. “You need depth in there, and I think that’s what he has added for us. And obviously he’s a playmaker, too. He’s out there getting sacks and everything. He can do it all.”

Shaw was very impressed with Washington-Grizzly Stadium during the evening kickoff versus Eastern Washington last Saturday. He said the atmosphere rivaled what he saw at Big 10 venues when he played at Maryland.

The Grizzlies’ defense will need a good performance from Shaw and the other defensive tackles this weekend. Portland State relies much more on the run than the pass. Montana takes on the Vikings at 3 p.m. this Saturday in Hillsboro, Oregon.