Nation came out in force in 2006,
UM the highest attendance in the
Division I Football Championship Subdivision
for the second consecutive year. More than
200,000 Griz fans showed up over nine home
games at an average of 22,600 fans per game.
University of Montana Grizzlies continued their success in 2006, advancing
to the playoffs for a record 14th consecutive year and posting their 21st
consecutive winning season in the NCAA Division I Football Championship
Subdivision (formerly Division I-AA).
Grizzlies finished the season 12-2, reeling off 12 consecutive wins to
capture their ninth straight Big Sky Conference title after a season-opening
loss to the Division I powerhouse Iowa Hawkeyes. More than 70,000 fans
watched the match at Iowa’s Kinnick Stadium, the most to ever see
the Griz in action.
around senior transfer quarterback Josh Swogger, the Griz had a balanced
offensive attack despite losing star running back Lex Hilliard to an injury
before the season started. The defense was anchored by senior All-American
Mike Murphy and was the key to many of the season’s victories, including
a hard-fought 13-7 win over rival Montana State to end the regular season.
year ended with a semifinal playoff loss to the University of Massachusetts
Minutemen at a rare night game in Washington-Grizzly Stadium. EPSN2, which
nationally televised the match, had portable stadium lights trucked in
from California to illuminate the field. It was only the second time a
night game has been played at the stadium in its 20-year history.
was a special season,” says UM Director of Athletics Jim O’Day.
“Our coaches and student-athletes did a marvelous job getting ready
to play each weekend. It was truly a remarkable effort by everyone associated
with Grizzly Athletics.”
Griz also performed well in the classroom, compiling a team cumulative-grade-point-average