Even though I was a Denver Broncos fan as a kid, how could you not be a fan of NFL legend Jerry Rice? Very cool to see the University of Montana's Eli Gillman with Jerry Rice as Gillman received "the Jerry Rice Award."

The Jerry Rice Award honors the freshman of the year in the FCS. According to MontanaSports.com, Montana State Bobcat Quarterback Tommy Mellott was also honored at the FCS awards banquet with the "Doris Robinson Award, which goes to the FCS player who excels on the field, in the classroom and across the community."

Thanks to Eli's mom, Minnesota State Rep. Dawn Gillman, for sharing the photos!

Even though the University of Montana came up short against the undefeated South Dakota State Jackrabbits on Sunday, it's been a great, surprising year for Griz football fans.

It's pretty crazy when you think about...Montana...Montana State...North Dakota State...South Dakota State...all making appearances at the FCS National Championship football game. Maybe we should call it the MonDak bowl from here on out?

SDSU has clearly been dominant now with back to back national titles- the first for Coach Jimmy Rogers this year. What built SDSU into the powerhouse they are today? Part of it is what the previous national champ head coach- Coach Stig- had to say about "the Jimmy Rogers Postulate." Here's what Coach Stig told me last Fall in Whitefish, Montana.        

Coach Stig: If you looked at Jimmy you would not offer him a scholarship. If he walked off your bus you would not say that guy's going to be a player. He's a backup- whatever the scenario is. And again, the physical conditioning test, the true speed test- that wasn't good enough to play. But what was inside him was beyond good enough to play. The best leader we've ever had in our program. And consequently, he's the head football coach right now. And he's grown up so to speak- he's like a son to my wife and I. But the most important thing about him is his dedication to the game of football and South Dakota State University.

Coach Stig's point? You can't judge a player just by looking at him.

(To be fair to Coach Rogers- the guy looks like he is nothing but muscle through and through.)


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