Getting Ready for the Griz
There’s nothing like a game under the lights to up the voltage of the already electric atmosphere of Washington-Grizzly Stadium. The University of Montana has spent the week prepping for the game by installing stadium lights and working out the logistics of hosting a quarterfinal playoff on a school day. Now it’s your turn, loyal Griz fans, to make sure you’re in top form to cheer those Montana boys to victory. Drawing from my extensive experience of attending football games in Arctic conditions, I have assembled the following list of game day suggestions:
1.) Layer up – With current predictions calling for a not-so-balmy kickoff temperature of around 25 degrees, this is definitely the time to break out that embarrassing maroon Snuggie your mom got you for Christmas last year. Nobody’s going to call you out for rocking a blanket with sleeves in these conditions. Hand and foot warmers might not be a bad idea, either.
2.) Be Prepared – Private pregame tailgating will begin at noon, with all other tailgates opening at 4 p.m. That should give you plenty of time to warm up your bloodstream with a few hot toddies before making your way to your seat. With that in mind, you should probably start asking around now for a designated driver. I'd also recommend keeping the number for UCALLUS (880-1673) handy in case your DD bails on his or her responsibilities and you need to get a hold of Missoula's "professional" safe-ride home service.
3.) Save your voice – Chances are, whether you’re at the game or at home on your couch, you’re going to be doing a lot of hooting and hollering. In the hours leading up to kickoff, pamper your ol’ yeller with plenty of chamomile tea and keep a package of throat lozenges at the ready in case your voice needs a little pick-me-up in the final quarter.
4.) Get creative – There are a lot of crazy fans out there in Griz Nation, so if you want a chance at getting your 5 seconds of fame on national TV, it’s time to start thinking about a catchy ESPN acronym for your homemade poster board. Easy Sending the Panthers back to Northern Iowa? Ahh, it’s a work in progress.
Brooke is a 2010 graduate of The University of Montana, where she ran track and cross-country for the Grizzlies. She is currently working as a writer and editor in Missoula.