CollegeMontana Grizzlies

Actions

LIVE BLOG: Griz and Jackrabbits collide in national championship

University of Montana undefeated against SDSU; record currently at 8-0
Clifton McDowell (17) warms up before FCS national championship
Posted at 10:50 AM, Jan 07, 2024

3:10 p.m. - Griz fans show their love and support for the team

3:07 p.m. - Griz fall 23-3
South Dakota State repeats as national champions.

2:54 p.m. - Incompletions hurt Griz
Eight straight incompletions result in punt. Under five minutes left as the Jackrabbits still lead 23-3.

2:39 p.m. - Griz defense nearly forces a turnover
Pass breakup falls incomplete. Jackrabbits punt on 4th and 4 with a fair catch called for. Griz takeover down 20.

Griz with the ball deep in their own territory late in the 4th quarter of the FCS national championship

2:33 p.m. - Griz stopped on 4th down attempt
Jackrabbits get the ball with 11 minutes left in the game.

2:20 p.m. - Third quarter comes to a close
Jackrabbits lead national championship 23-3 with one quarter to go.

2:15 p.m. - SDSU sinks a field goal to extend the lead
Jackrabbits up 23-3 with :56 remaining in the third quarter.

2:12 p.m. - SDSU forces a fumble
McDowell loses the ball after he's hit from behind by a defender. Jackrabbits recover at the Griz 21.

2:09 p.m. - Jackrabbits strike again from 23 yards out
After a TD pass, the Jacks bobble a PAT. 20-3 with 2:36 to play in the third.

2:03 p.m. - Drive stalls after offensive penalty
Intentional grounding backs the Griz up. Griz punt after facing a 3rd and 24.

1:53 p.m. - Jackrabbits break into the end zone
SDSU takes a 14-3 lead with 7:11 left in the 3rd quarter.

1:50 p.m. - Jackrabbits get the ball back
Ball at the SDSU 42 with 9:52 in the 3rd.

1:47 p.m. - Griz take over inside their own five
Still a tight contest at 7-3 Jackrabbits. 10:30 left in the 3rd quarter.

Griz with the ball inside their own five during the FCS national championship on Sunday, January 7, 2024.

1:40 p.m. - Griz turn the ball over on opening drive
Jackrabbits take over 12 minutes left in the third quarter.

1:30 p.m. - Some sights of the first half

University of Montana freshman Eli Gillman (10) runs the ball during the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.
University of Montana freshman Eli Gillman (10) runs the ball during the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.
University of Montana junior Erik Barker (88) holds the ball high after a punt during the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.
University of Montana junior Erik Barker (88) holds the ball high after a punt during the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.
University of Montana freshman Eli Gillman (10) is stopped inches from the goal line during the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.
University of Montana freshman Eli Gillman (10) is stopped inches from the goal line during the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.
University of Montana senior Clifton McDowell (17) throws a pass during the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.
University of Montana senior Clifton McDowell (17) throws a pass during the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.

1:14 p.m. - Deep shot by the Griz picked off
First half is in the books. SDSU leads 7-3.

1:05 p.m. - Montana forced to punt
7-3 Jackrabbits. 1:52 left in the first half

McDowell works to stay loose on the sidelines during FCS national championship at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas

12:57 p.m. - Fans celebrate punt recovery
Fans watching at The Still Room in downtown Missoula cheer on the Grizzlies

Griz fans at Missoula watch party celebrate after punt recovery

12:57 p.m. - Griz recover punt , turnover
New life.

Jackrabbits and Griz battle for national championship

12:50 p.m. - Griz defense holds
Jackrabbits forced to punt. 7-3 with 7:49 left in the half.

Griz and Jackrabbits in the FCS national championship

12:41 p.m. - Montana gets on the board
Griz bury a 30-yard field goal. 7-3 Jackrabbits.

12:34 p.m. - Turnover!
Griz pick the ball off - Corbin Walker (8) forces the turnover. The First Team All Big Sky defender sets the Montana Grizzlies up.

12:30 p.m. - Griz stopped on fourth down
Turnover on downs. Jackrabbits take over.

12:28 p.m. - Big decision on deck
After a quarterback scramble, the Griz face 4th down and 1. End of the first quarter.
Those 15 minutes flew by.

12:20 p.m. - Team honors legendary coach during the championship game
Don Read sticker placed on player helmets.

"DR" sticker honors legendary Griz coach

12:18 p.m. - It's what he does so well
Junior Bergen with a fantastic kickoff return to put the Griz into good field position.

12:15 p.m. - Jackrabbits bulldoze their way down the field
SDSU strikes first with an opening drive touchdown. 18 rushing touchdowns on the season for the Jacks. 7-0. Defending national champions with the lead.

12:00 p.m. - It's time to get this thing started

National Anthem ahead of kickoff for the FCS national championship

11:45 a.m. - This is what it's all about!

11:35 a.m. - Fans have filled the stands
Seats are full of Griz fans ready for action

Fans ready for FCS national championship

11:30 a.m. - We're 30 minutes out Griz fans

FCS National Championship warm ups
The University of Montana warms up before the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.
Junior Bergen (5) warms up before FCS national championship game
University of Montana junior Junior Bergen (5) warms up before the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.
Clifton McDowell (17) warms up before FCS national championship
University of Montana senior Clifton McDowell (17) warms up before the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.

11:20 a.m. - Getting closer

11:05 a.m. - Your Montana Grizzlies take the field to warm up
We're getting closer to go time!

10:50 a.m. - Fans are starting to fill the stadium
As we get closer to kickoff, fans are making their way inside Toyota Stadium in Friso, Texas for today's national championship battle between the Griz and the Jackrabbits.

Fans heading into Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas
Fans inside Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas for 2024 National Championship
Toyota Stadium fans finding their seats

10:35 a.m. - Team getting into game-mode

Getting into the zone before the game

10:30 a.m. - Fans show their support ahead of national championship
As we get closer to game time, take a look at fans gathered outside of the stadium ready for today's monster clash.

Little Griz fan ready for the big game
Fans welcome Montana and South Dakota State to the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.
Fans cheer on team before FCS national championship
Fans welcome Montana and South Dakota State to the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.
Fans welcome team ahead of FCS national championship
Fans welcome Montana and South Dakota State to the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.
We Believe
Fans tailgating outside of Toyota Stadium
Griz fans outside of Toyota Stadium
Fans ready for kickoff

10:10 a.m. - Fans show support to players

Players greet fans outside of Toyota Stadium
Fans welcome Montana and South Dakota State to the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.

10:10 a.m. - Battle of the college bands

University of Montana band leads team to Toyota Stadium for FCS national championship
Fans welcome Montana and South Dakota State to the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.
South Dakota State University band
Fans welcome Montana and South Dakota State to the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.

10:05 a.m. - Jackrabbits fans cheering on their defending champs

Jackrabbit fans welcome their team
Fans welcome Montana and South Dakota State to the FCS national championship game at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 7, 2024.

10:00 a.m. - The day you've been waiting for is here!
Team makes their way to the stadium in preparation for today's match up against South Dakota State for a shot at the title.