Griz Picked Second, Bobcats Third in Preseason Football Polls

Big Sky Conference preseason picks announced

By Beacon Staff

The Montana Grizzlies were picked second in the 2014 Big Sky Conference preseason polls by both the league coaches and media, the conference announced Tuesday.

The Montana State Bobcats were tabbed third in both polls.

The Grizzlies were 10-3 overall and 6-2 in the Big Sky last year, tying for third. The team returns 14 starters this season.

Defending league champion Eastern Washington was picked to finish first in both polls.

“It seems like for so many years Montana was picked at the top of the conference in the preseason polls,” said UM head coach Mick Delaney. “That shows the Big Sky coaches’ respect for the Grizzly program, and for the tradition and history that it has. That’s an honor to our players and what they have done over a long period of time, from probably 1986 up to the present time.

Four other Big Sky teams were picked to finish in the same order in both polls behind the Eagles and the Grizzlies. Cal Poly was picked to finish fourth in the polls, Northern Arizona was chosen to finish fifth, while Southern Utah was voted to end up in sixth.

Montana has been the No. 1 preseason pick 11 times in the last 15 seasons. Last season the Bobcats were predicted to place first, followed by EWU, and the Griz were tabbed third.

The Bobcats kick off the season Aug. 30 at Arkansas State. The Grizzlies play at Wyoming Aug. 30.

Big Sky Conference

Preseason Coaches’ Poll

1. Eastern Washington (12) 144

2. Montana (1) 130

3. Montana State 111

4. Cal Poly 108

5. Northern Arizona 100

6. Southern Utah 89

7. Sacramento State 79

8. Portland State 71

9. UC Davis 66

10. North Dakota 34

11. Weber State 30

12. Idaho State 28

13. Northern Colorado 23

Preseason Media Poll

No.-School Points

1. Eastern Washington (34) 464

2. Montana (1) 416

3. Montana State (1) 364

4. Cal Poly 329

5. Northern Arizona 328

6. Southern Utah 299

7. UC Davis 228

8. Portland State 227

9. Sacramento State 222

10. Idaho State 124

11. North Dakota 121

12. Weber State 103

13. Northern Colorado 61

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