Dec 7, 2011 9:22 AM by Mark Holyoak (KPAX News)
MISSOULA- Montana football coach Robin Pflugrad hopes the Griz continue a late season run that will make this team's accomplishments legendary for years to come. But when his Griz line up against Northern Iowa, he'll look across the field to a living legend of sorts.
Head Coach Mark Farley is in his 11th season at UNI and has led his team to seven playoff appearances. Farley also has 99 career victories over that span, meaning if he gets one more he'll reach the century mark.
"Very physical team. Kinda reminds me what Coach Farley would be like. He was a great defensive player when he was there in college and they just keep doing it over every year," Pflugrad said Tuesday.
One thing Farley would love to do is to return home to Iowa with a victory over the Griz, something the Panthers have never done. UNI is 0-4 all-time against Montana and when he looks at the Griz, Farley sees at least one distinct similarity with his own team.
"I think Montana is similar. In fact, their expectations are very similar. Whey they go into a season, they expect to win. When they go into a football game, they expect to win. I think that's what separates them from a lot of teams that we line up against," Farley observed.
Friday's game is the 50th playoff game in Montana Grizzly history and the Panthers are ranked second compared to the Griz at number five, but they're a lower seed. And that's significant since UNI is just 1-3 in quarter-final games on the road.
The temporary lights should get here Wednesday and will be up in time for Friday's prime time showdown at Washington-Grizzly Stadium with kickoff set for 6 p.m. on ESPN.