2011 Record: 11-3 (7-1)
Simply put, it's been a long, tumultuous offseason in Missoula with the firing of Robin Pflugrad along with the mysteries surrounding sexual assault allegations, not to mention the loss of nine starters on defense from 2011.
Regardless, the Grizzlies, along with interim head coach Mich Delaney, still have a tremendous amount of talent and enough to win the Big Sky. The offensive backfield will look to be one of the best in the conference with quarterback Jordan Johnson and an outstanding running back tandem led by Peter Nguyen and Dan Moore.
The defense will be young but should still have enough talent to help the Grizzlies win the Big Sky. The linebacking crops for Montana will not only be the best in the conference, but one of the best in FCS football with John Kanongata'a, Brock Coyle and Jordan Tripp returning from a medical redshirt season.
Heading into the 2012 season, the biggest question for the Grizzlies on defense has to be cornerback, especially with the departure of Trumaine Johnson to the NFL draft. However, transfer junior David Nguyen showed promise with a spring game high of five tackles.
Overall, Montana's spring game (with 8,731 fans in attendance, which was an FCS record) saw offensive explosion with 390 yards and four touchdowns through the air.
As of now, it's truly a toss-up between Montana and Montana State for the number one spot. However, having won at least a share of 13 of the last 14 Big Sky Conference titles, it's still Montana's conference to lose.