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Montana Grizzlies' result versus brand-new opponent could prove big come November

Montana battles Monmouth for first time Saturday
Bobby Hauck
Posted at 5:14 PM, Sep 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-16 19:52:52-04

MISSOULA — Next up for the Montana Grizzlies, a brand-new challenge.

Montana will meet Monmouth for the first time ever. The Hawks out of the Big South Conference went 8-3 last year and made the FCS playoffs a couple seasons ago.

But not only have they not played the Griz before, they don't have any recent common opponents. So preparation will be a little harder for Bobby Hauck and company this week. The head coach preached the importance of this non-conference tilt, while keeping November on his mind.

"It is a challenge because we don't have a whole bunch of crossover," admitted Hauck. "But we do know of some of the teams they've played the last couple years. We've seen them on film. So we have a little bit of gauge there. But these inter-sectional games are big when you've got a playoff system. So for us this is a huge game in that regard."

The Grizzlies likely finished one win shy of a playoff trip a season ago. A narrow non-conference loss at Western Illinois could have made the difference. Hauck and the Grizzlies remember that fact.

Monmouth beat Albany in overtime last week to improve to 2-1. The Hawks and Grizzlies collide at 1 p.m. Saturday in Washington-Grizzly Stadium.