MISSOULA — Montana football kicked off spring ball last week as the Grizzlies work toward a pair of spring games, and ultimately, a full fall slate after going over a year without a game.
Looking ahead to the fall, UM is scheduled to play an 11-game schedule with the three non-conference games on the schedule against Washington, Western Illinois and Dixie State.
According to game contracts obtained by MTN Sports, Washington is set to pay Montana $675,000 for the Grizzlies to travel and take on the Huskies in Seattle on Sept. 4 to open the season for both schools. The contract states UM will receive that payment no later than 90 days after the game occurs.
That payment is up from the reported $625,000 Washington paid UM in 2017 when the teams met. Fellow Pac-12 school Oregon paid Montana $650,000 in 2019.
The contract also states that if one school cancels the game, they will owe the other school a forfeiture fee of $975,000. UW will provide Montana with 300 complimentary tickets and UM also holds the option of purchasing up to 5,000 additional tickets for the game.
On Sept. 11, Montana will play it's first home game of the season against Western Illinois, an FCS school out of the Missouri Valley Football Conference. The two teams met in 2018 in Macomb, Illinois, which Western Illinois won 31-27.
Montana will pay Western Illinois $50,000 to make the trip west and will also provide 150 complimentary tickets. Western Illinois provided the same payment and ticket number to the Grizzlies in the first meeting. If one school breaches the contract, they would owe the other school $100,000.
Montana's third and final non-conference game will be a home game against FCS Dixie State on Oct. 9. Montana is not contracted to pay Dixie State any monetary payment for the game though they will provide 200 complimentary tickets. If a school breaches that contract, they will owe the other school $500,000.
Montana also announced that it will pay Central Washington $35,000 and Portland State $36,000 for making the trip to Missoula for the scheduled spring games. UM will play it's first game in over a year when Central Washington visits on April 10 while Portland State is scheduled to take on Montana on April 17.
The school also announced on Thursday that it will be allowing a limited number of fans to both games -- roughly 5,000 -- after approval from the Missoula City-County Health Department.
For a look at Montana State's guaranteed game payouts, click here.