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Shrine football media day: Players entertained by helmet-sticker trades

Shrine Football Helmet Sticker Collection
Posted at 4:29 PM, Jun 14, 2024

BILLINGS — Saturday night it's on between the East and West all-stars in the 77th Montana Shrine football showdown.

Take your pick of storylines, including the reason for this annual game which is to raise money for the Shriners Children's Hospital Spokane. Montana's game is one of the nation's oldest and one of the most profitable, said to have raised over $1 million in the last 10 years for the Spokane hospital.

Ironically, Rob Stanton from Billings West is coaching the East. Pat Duchien — who's won the last three State B titles leading Florence-Carlton — is in charge of the West squad, which has also won three straight in this series.

Then there's one of the coolest traditions of this game: the exchange of helmet stickers.

Shrine Football Helmet Stickers

"I tried to get every sticker (of teams) I didn't like in high school, so I never liked the Billings schools and I never liked Gallatin," said East tackle Torin Jeske of Bozeman High. "So, I think it's just a cool way to show progression within teammates."

Froid-Lake's Mason Dethman will suit up at safety for the East and chased down stickers from a variety of Montana's high school classifications, plus one from another country.

"Columbus, CMR and Red Lodge ... and then we've got a kid from Canada and I got his sticker. They're the Griffins," Dethman said, pointing to one of nearly a dozen on his helmet.

West defensive end Ethan Alexander of Florence-Carlton described how it worked for him.

"It was kind of a free-for-all with everybody handing them out," he explained. "Some people required a trade and some people were like, here, take it if you want."

West center Taven McMaster is piling on stickers from two all-star games.

"Yeah, I've got both from the Class B game and then the Shrine game," said the Jefferson High School graduate. "So, I've got Florence, Manhattan, Huntley project is over here ... I've got my own somewhere down in here though," he said laughing.

"I think it's just a cool way to show every team coming together no matter how much you disliked the other team during the high school season," added Jeske.

Saturday's 77th Montana East-West Shrine Game will be broadcast and streamed live across Montana Television Network platforms. The pregame show starts at 6 p.m. with kickoff set shortly after 7 p.m. from Daylis Stadium in Billings.

The East leads the overall series 41-35.