Montana continues conference slate Saturday at Cal Poly

If history is any indicator, Montana should have no problem handling Cal Poly on Saturday.

After all, the Griz came out on top in five of five games during Bobby Hauck’s first stint as head coach. So with Hauck back at the helm, the odds are certainly in Montana’s favor, right?

Protheroe-ASU2 Well, it’s not as simple as that.

Back then, between 2003 and 2009, the Mustangs were an FCS independent with a different coach and a different system. Rich Ellerson left in 2008 and the program now has almost a decade to evolve under the leadership of his successor, Tim Walsh.

“They are running a bit different offense now (the triple option) but the core traits of good, hard-nosed football, toughness discipline, effort level, all those things that Tim’s teams play with, theses guys show,” Hauck said in his weekly news conference Monday.

Walsh helped guide Cal Poly to a share of the Big Sky Conference title in 2012, the school’s first year in the league. And despite falling short in playoff pushes the following two years – mostly due to injuries at the quarterback position – the team found new life under quarterback Dano Graves in 2016.

But last year’s 1-10 finish demonstrated again the Mustang’s unpredictability; and this year, with starting QB Khalell Jenkins out with injury, the team has fallen again on hard times.

This time around, 1-3 Cal Poly faces a 3-1 Montana team riding high after opening the conference slate with a big win over Sacramento State. Kickoff is set for 5 pm MST Saturday in San Luis Obispo, Calif.



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