UNH On National TV (ESPN2) For Second Consecutive Week
DURHAM, N.H.-- The University of New Hampshire football team is coming off one of its biggest wins in program history and as a result has gained the opportunity to travel to Missoula, Mont. to take on the University of Montana Grizzlies in an NCAA I-AA Quarterfinal matchup on Dec. 4. Kickoff is scheduled for 4 p.m. EST. and for the second consecutive week, the Wildcats have been selected to be seen live on ESPN2.
The Wildcats are coming off an impressive 27-23 come-from-behind first-round victory at Georgia Southern, a team that had won six I-AA national titles and posted a 29-2 record in the post-season. The Eagles had previously been undefeated in 14 straight opening-round playoff contests until the Wildcats won in Statesboro. Even more impressive was the fact that GSU was the top-ranked scoring offense in I-AA with an average of 49.2 ppg. UNH held the I-AA powerhouse to just four first downs and 113 yards in the second half.
Montana made short work of Northwestern State on Saturday, defeating the visitors by an amazing 56-7 margin setting up what could be an explosive day of offense.
The Wildcats, ranked No. 5 in I-AA football, earned their first-ever playoff victory in three attempts and have now tied the mark for the program's best-ever record at 10-2, which was also accomplished in 1994. Even more amazing is the fact that UNH has now set a team record with an 8-0 mark on the road. UNH is also 5-0 when it has played on television and the Wildcats are 4-0 in evening games. The squad has also won six straight since the Oct. 23 Hofstra game and, eight of its last nine matchups.
Montana was ranked No. 7 in The Sports Network Poll and enters the contest with a 10-2 record after its victory over Northwestern State. The team has won four straight and eight of its last nine games. The only losses this season for the Grizzlies have been against Sam Houston State (41-29) and Portland State (35-32).
UNH and Montana, a team from the Big Sky Conference, have never met on the football field but the Wildcats and Grizzlies have both beaten two like opponents in Hofstra and Maine of the Atlantic 10 Football Conference this season. UNH defeated The Pride by a 33-27 margin in Durham and knocked off Maine in the final regular-season game of the year at Orono (50-36). Montana defeated Hofstra (41-23) in Missoula and the Black Bears in Montana (27-20).
In addition, UNH played Montana State of the Big Sky Conference back in 1976 in the first round of the NCAA Div. II Playoffs and lost by a 17-16 margin.