It was the coldest kickoff in Griz Football Playoff History on Saturday. The low temperatures brought low attendance. 17,345 fans attended Saturday’s game, out of roughly 25,000 possible seats.
NBC Montana caught up with some hardcore fans on their way into the game. Tailgate areas usually remain packed during Griz games, though the areas resembled ghost towns Saturday.
“I’ve been tailgating for a while, it’s awfully cold. I kind of feel bad for these South Carolina people,” said student Ryan Graham. There was a chance Graham wasn’t going to stay the whole game.
“If it’s a blowout, I’m going,” said Graham.
Across the way, Kyle Sample headed into the stadium with his little sister, hoping adrenaline will help keep them warm.
“[I have] Under Armor underneath, long sleeves, but, maybe growing up here has something to do with it,” said Sample.
Some fans opted to stay indoors and catch the action, even if they usually go to the games. Emma Ferrell and her family drove from Billings, but decided against actually going into the game. Instead, they viewed from the warm and cozy Press Box sports bar.
“We decided we wouldn’t [go to the game] because we looked and it was too cold,” said Ferrell.
Nearby, Mark Curnow watched the game with his wife. Curnow told NBC Montana that 10 degrees is around his breaking point. He heads inside if it gets colder than that.
“We’re not really big fans of the cold. They’re some very diehard fans [at the stadium],” said Curnow.