“I Love the Grizzlies and I Couldn’t Be Happier With My Decision”

By ERIC TABER for GoGriz.com

“I love the Montana Grizzlies and I couldn’t be happier with my decision.”

There is no doubt emotions ran high for each of the 26,472 fans packed Washington-Grizzly Stadium last Saturday to witness one of the greatest wins in Montana history. There are countless moments that will stick with people for years to come.

Those moments have been shared, tweeted, analyzed and applauded ad infinitum over the last few days. Moments such as Ben Roberts catching his first pass as a Grizzly for a touchdown, and Joey Counts crossing the goal line to seal the UM victory have helped make those players household names.

However, there is one moment from the game that has helped make an Internet sensation out of out of a Grizzly player that wasn’t even on the field.


Willy Pflug on the sideline during a Griz scrimmage (Courtesy Montana Sports Information).

True freshman quarterback Willy Pflug (Portland, Ore.) was in the stands with the rest of the Grizzly redshirts watching as Jamaal Jones ran in for the first Griz touchdown. What happened next has made Pflug into something of a cult hero amongst Grizzly fans nationwide.

“I love the Montana Grizzlies, and I couldn’t be happier with my decision,” said Pflug’s voice, seemingly out of nowhere over the ESPN broadcast.

His voice came across viewer’s speakers at home loud and clear just as the Griz were putting together another drive, and broadcasting legend Brent Musburger was calling the play-by-play.

“The ESPN crowd mic fell down, and I had it in my hand. During the next drive, I just took advantage of the moment and tried to get a little recruiting action for us,” said Pflug, whose proclamation of affection for UM was heard by more than a million people around the world.

The statement has become an Internet sensation, encapsulating the joy Griz fans felt after the win. Memes have popped up, tweets have been tweeted, and even t-shirts with “I love the Montana Grizzlies, and I couldn’t be happier with my decision” printed on them have become available for purchase online.

Pflug has all of a sudden become the de facto voice of Griz nation.

“I really didn’t think it would be that big of a deal, or be that loud on the broadcast,” said the freshman QB. “A lot of people were like: ‘Why would you say that? Of all the things you could have said, why say that?’ Better positive then negative I guess.”

When placed in the situation of having a hot, ESPN microphone in their hands, many students could have taken a different route. Pflug started recruiting for his team. “Better positive than negative” is right.

Time will tell if his recruiting tactics pay off (Coach Stitt has eluded to the fact the massive audience tuned into the game has garnered recruiting interest from states the Griz don’t often pull from). But if an advertising agent were to write a script showing off the virtues of the University of Montana, they wouldn’t get a better testimonial than that.

Pflug will be in the stands with the redshirts at Washington-Grizzly Stadium once again on Saturday as UM hosts Cal Poly. No word yet if Coach Stitt will get him on the recruiting trail, but the t-shirts should help.