By CHRIS WALTERSKIRCHEN
On Saturday when Washington State beat Miami in a snowy Sun Bowl it marked the second time in three years that a FBS School won a Bowl Game after losing to a Big Sky Conference team earlier in the Season. In the opener of the 2013 season Vernon Adams led Eastern Washington to an upset win at Oregon State, the Beavers went on to win the Hawaii Bowl over Boise State. Earlier this season Portland State went into Pullman and upset the Cougars on their home field.
The Griz and Lady Griz basketball begin the “Road To Reno” this weekend as Big Sky play begins. The Montana Lady Griz are looking for their first back-to-back Big Sky title since 2008-09 When Mandy Morales and Sonya Rogers were the standouts.
Saturday’s Griz-Northern Arizona game will be the first meeting since a hotly contested Conference Semi-final last spring. That loss fueled the Lumberjacks into a run to the CIT Tournament Championship game where they fell to Evansville.
While all the members of Rob Ash’s staff at MSU were let go a month ago a member of the Bobcat coaching staff for more than a decade will be on the sidelines at the sugar Bowl. Offensive line coach Jason McEndoo is now the offensive line coach at Oklahoma State. By the way Oklahoma State head coach Mike Gundy got his first win at OSU with a hard-fought win over the MSU Bobcats to open the 2005 season.
Alabama is favored over Michigan State in Thursday’s Cotton Bowl, but the Tide’s win may have been assured when Derrick Henry won the Heisman Trophy. The last 6 Heisman winners have gone on to lead their teams to a Bowl game win. The last Heisman winner to lose in their Bowl game was Sam Bradford of Oklahoma, but Bradford was outdueled by his Heisman predecessor Tim Tebow.
Chris Walterskirchen has been an observer of Montana sports for nearly half a century. A Kalispell native, Chris has worked in various capacities for professional and college sports organization of at various times: ranging from announcing and statistical work to the concessions and even a stint as a costumed mascot.
Chris has academic degrees in communications and elementary education. His style of sports trivia involves more than just who won and who lost, but also focuses on the obscure or human side of sports. In this blog you will learn things like the Grizzly football team has won 210 games over the 19 seasons since they have had Monte as their mascot or that UNLV is the only school that both the Griz and Lady Griz have both faced in the NCAA basketball tournament
When not following sports Chris enjoys taking care of animals of all kinds (a peacock rescue?) and reading to pre-schoolers.