BOZEMAN, Mont. — On Thursday, Hero Sports released official preseason rankings, placing Montana State University and the University of Montana both in the top 25 among programs in the Football Championship Subdivision.
MSU will enter the season ranking as Hero Sports' No. 3 team in the nation, while UM will come in just outside the top 15 as the No. 16 team in the FCS.
Last season, Montana State went 12-2 and appeared in the FCS semifinals for the third consecutive season, falling short to South Dakota State in Brookings, South Dakota.
The Bobcats also earned a share of the Big Sky Conference title, their first since 2012.
This will be Montana State head coach Brent Vigen’s third season with the team.
They will have a shot at redemption against previous season-ender South Dakota State in week three.
The matchup in South Dakota has the potential to be a top 3 matchup, according to Hero Sports preseason rankings, which lists the Jackrabbits as the No. 1 team in the nation.
UM is coming off an 8-5 season in which the Griz advanced to the quarterfinals of the FCS playoffs.
The Griz finished 4-4 in Big Sky Conference games last season.
This will be Bobby Hauck’s sixth season as head coach since his return to the program in 2018.
Other schools around the conference that received top 25 rankings from Hero Sports include No. 5 Idaho, No. 10 Sacramento State, No. 11 Weber State and No. 18 UC Davis.