What??? How did we all of a sudden end up less than 40 days from the season opener?

And while Missoula, Montana's current weather belies the term "Fall Camp," that is what's about to begin for the University of Montana Grizzly football team. And the extra-excited fans who just can't wati to get the season started can get a little taste of what is in store for the 2023 Griz.

Eric Taber in UM Sports Information tells us that this season's edition of Grizzly football officially begins its quest for a Big Sky Conference title and beyond, starting on Monday,  August 7, with the first of 18 practices of fall training camp.

Griz players will report on Friday, August 4, for two days of meetings, equipment fitting, and walk-throughs. The Griz then return to Dornblaser Field at UM's South Campus Sports Complex, for the first official practice of the season at 2:30 p.m. on August 7.

The first 11 practices through Thursday, August 18, are open to the public. Each practice is scheduled to begin at 2:30. Practices on Monday and Tuesday the following week (August 21-22) are also open to the public. Practices will be closed to media and the public on August 19, and August 23-26. All practices remain open for Quarterback Club members.

Fellow Big Sky coaches and the media did not hold the Griz in very high regard with their preseason selections at the annual Big Sky Conference Kickoff event this past week. The Griz were picked to finish third by the league's media and sixth by the coaches. Nevertheless, with 15 starters returning from last year's team, 9 on offense (including the entire offensive line), and six on defense, and with fan expectations never lowering, the Griz are poised to prove the prognosticators wrong.

Here's to an awesome 2023 season, which opens on September 2, with a first-time matchup with the Butler Bulldogs out of Indianapolis. Kickoff at Washington-Grizzly Stadium is set for noon.

How's that for an early, exciting start to the Labor Day weekend?

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