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Montana's Patrick Rohrbach earns Big Sky special teams honor

Patrick Rohrbach still.jpg
Posted at 4:09 PM, Oct 04, 2022

(Editor's note: University of Montana media release)

MISSOULA — After a big week with the boot, Montana punter Patrick Rohrbach has been named the Big Sky Special Teams Player of the Week following the Grizzlies' win at Idaho State, the league announced Monday.

The freshman from Kalispell handled Montana's punting and kickoff duties in his first career game played in the kicker-friendly conditions of a dome at Holt Arena Saturday, helping Montana flip the field on several occasions. He also earned an honorable mention for the Stats Perform FCS Special Teams Player of the Week.

In the punting game, Rohrbach totaled 211 yards on four attempts for an average of 52.8 yards per kick, with two that traveled over 50 yards. His average was bolstered by a booming punt that traveled 58 yards and pinned Idaho State at its own two-yard line and another that traveled 68 yards.

In the kickoff game, he totaled 268 yards on five attempts, averaging 53.6 yards per kick. ISU returned just two of those kicks for a total of 43 yards.

Rohrbach's college career is off to a stellar start, with the Glacier High product leading the Big Sky in punting after five games. He's dropped half of his total punts (11 of 22) inside the opponent's 20-yard line and hammered six of those 50-plus yards as well.

Montana is currently second in the nation in net punt average – the true indicator of an effective punt coverage unit. Rohrbach is averaging 44.1 yards per punt, while the Grizzlies' net punt average comes in at 41.55 yards this week, meaning UM's opponents are being held to just over 2.5 yards per return.

This marks the first Big Sky Player of the Week award of Rohrbach's career after earning three nominations so far this season.

Montana has now had five Grizzlies named Big Sky Player of the Week so far this season, with an honoree now in three-straight weeks.

Linebacker Braxton Hill won Defensive Player of the Week honors following week one, with Patrick O'Connell following up on week three and Robby Hauck honored on week four. Quarterback Lucas Johnson was also named Offensive Player of the Week following UM's win over Portland State.

Montana's five weekly accolades this season are already the program's most since 2019, when the Griz totaled seven recipients.