5 Most Common FBS Opponents For Montana Grizzlies Football

There has been a lot of talk over the years about the Montana Grizzlies potentially joining the FBS, which is the highest level of college football. While Montana doesn’t play current FBS teams much these days as they focus on their FCS foes, they do still have some old rivals. Out of all of the current FBS teams, there are a few that Montana played many times over the years.

To give you an idea of how Montana would fare in the FBS, here is a look at how they did against teams that are currently in the highest subdivision of college football.

1. Washington State

There was a time when Washington State and Montana would play each other every year during the early days of college football. Prior to joining what is now the Pac-12 Conference in 1962, Washington State was part of the Pacific Coast Conference. The conference was home to Montana football from 1924 to 1950.

Washington State won the first 15 times that they played Montana, with the Grizzlies finally getting the upper hand in 1947 with a 13-12 upset. The two schools played for what might be the final time in 1951, with Washington State winning their first game in the rivalry as a ranked team (17th). Overall, Washington State leads the series 19-1, outscoring the Grizzlies heavily in this one-sided affair.

2. Utah State

There was only a brief period in which Montana and Utah State were in the same conference, which came in the Mountain States Athletic Conference in the late 1940s. However, the two played several times both before and after their short time of being conference foes. The first came in 1917 with Utah State winning 21-6, and they played just once between then and 1946.

Overall, Utah State has won 14 of the 19 matchups, with the active win streak of five by the Aggies being the longest win streak in the series. They played each other every year from 1946 until 1962, but haven’t played since. Montana’s biggest win came in 1950 when they defeated Utah State 38-7.

3. Washington

Washington is one of the premier conferences of the Pac-12, but there was once a time when they joined several other schools including Montana in the Pacific Coast Conference. The two schools played each other almost yearly between 1923 and 1942, with a couple of additional matchups afterward.

After an eighth-ranked Huskies team defeated Montana 58-7 in 1951, it appeared the series might be over. However, the two played each other once more in 2021, with 20th-ranked Washington suffering a massive upset to Montana, 13-7. It was the only win in the series for Montana as Washington won 14 of the other games with one tie in 1929.

4. BYU

Though BYU has been famous for bouncing around conferences over the years, they’ve played a wide variety of teams throughout their history. This includes Montana, with the Grizzlies and Cougars playing each other 15 times between 1941 and 1962. Montana won the first matchup, and things were streaky afterward.

BYU holds the overall advantage in the series 10-5, including winning the final three by a combined 29 points. Montana’s biggest victory in the series came in 1949 when they defeated BYU 25-6. BYU’s biggest win was in 1958 when they cruised to a 41-12 victory.

5. Colorado State

The current FBS that just cracks the top five on the list is Colorado State, a current member of the Mountain West Conference. The Rams once belonged Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference and shifted over to the Skyline Conference at the same time as the Grizzlies. The two wouldn’t play again after Colorado State went independent and eventually the WAC, but they did play each other 15 times.

Colorado State holds a slight advantage in the series, winning nine of the 15 games, including a 50-point win in 1958. However, Montana won the final three games of the series, upsetting Colorado State by 12, 3, and 1 point. Montana handed Colorado State their largest defeat in 1947, winning 41-7.

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