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8-Man All-Stars: Fairview's Hunter Sharbono grateful for opportunity to play for Montana State

Posted at 4:09 PM, Jun 02, 2023
and last updated 2023-06-02 18:40:25-04

BUTTE — Hunter Sharbono is fully aware that 8- and 6-Man football players getting a chance to play at the Division I level isn't an overly common occurrence.

The Fairview graduate, who will play for the Red Team in Saturday's 39th Bob Cleverley 8-Man All-Star Game, committed to Montana State back in November, three days after the Warriors' playoff run ended in the semifinal against St. Ignatius.

"I'm very grateful," Sharbono said at a Clev practice this week. "I mean, there is plenty of people that were there to support me and push me to be where I am today. I couldn't ask for a better opportunity. It's amazing."

The 6-foot-2, 235 pounder is set to join three other Bobcats who hail from Class C Montana high school programs: Junior defensive end Brody Grebe (Custer-Hysham-Melstone), redshirt freshman defensive back Kade Cutler (Drummond-Phillipsburg), and senior tight end Treyton Pickering (Sunburst).

"I think it's pretty special for us small town kids to get the opportunity to play the 11-man game," Sharbono said. "We got what it takes. We're football players too, we should get the opportunity everyone else does."

At Fairview, Sharbono was a two-way player who was on the field for just about every single snap as he alternated between running back, linebacker and defensive line.

But as a junior and senior, he was given some plays off, though he wasn't entirely thrilled about it.

"These last two years it killed me not be on special teams," he said with a chuckle. "But our coach had the young kids get their shot on special teams. So there was my breather."

Sharbono excelled on both offense and defense with the Warriors, but he said MSU plans on developing him as a defensive end.

"But I'll let them plug me in wherever they need me," he said.

Sharbono will be back in Butte in a few weeks for the 76th annual Montana East-West Shrine Game. He'll then have a few down weeks before heading to Bozeman and preparing for fall camp with the Bobcats.

"It's pretty special to be able to represent my state," Sharbono said of getting to play in two all-star games. "The memories have already been flowing in like crazy. I just hope we beat that Red Team."