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Joe Glenn wins the 2000 Eddie Robinson Award
In his first year at Montana, Glenn led the Grizzlies to a 10-1 record, a Big Sky Conference championship, a No. 1 ranking in the National Top 25 poll and the top seed in the FCS playoffs. In the 103 prior seasons of Montana football, no coach had put together as impressive a record in his first season. The Grizzlies, often noted before Glenn's tenure for their offensive proficiency, also became one of the nation's top defensive clubs under Glenn's tutelage. Montana allowed just 265 yards per game on the season, a figure that ranked eight-best in FCS.
After a season-opening loss to Hofstra, Montana reeled off 10 straight victories, the longest such streak for the school since 1996. Included in the streak were wins against FBS Idaho and No. 18 Eastern Washington, No. 8 Portland State, and No. 19 Weber State. Each of the aforementioned victories came on the road. Montana ranked in the national Top 10 throughout the season, including a three-week run at No. 1 to end the regular season.
Glenn is just the second head coach from the Big Sky Conference to win the Robinson Award, after Nevada's Chris Ault took home the award in 1991.
The 1971 graduate of the University of South Dakota came to Montana after 11 seasons as head coach of Division II Northern Colorado (1989-99). While at UNC, the two-time AFCA Division II National Coach of the Year led the Bears to five straight D-II playoff trips, including national titles in 1996 and 1997. Glenn left Northern Colorado with an outstanding record of 98-35 (.737). Prior to becoming UNC's head coach, Glenn was an assistant with the Bears (1987-88). Prior to that, Glenn served his first stint at Montana as an assistant under Larry Donovan (1980-85). Before coming to Missoula the first time, Glenn was head coach at Doane College in Nebraska, where he was 21-18-1 in four seasons as head man there. Early in his career, Glenn served assistantships at Northern Arizona (1975) and the University of South Dakota (1974), his alma mater.
Glenn received 15 first-place votes and 161 points from the panel of 90 FCS sports information directors and selected media. Following Glenn in the ultra-close voting were Eastern Illinois' Bob Spoo, who earned 12 first-place votes and 158 total points, and Western Kentucky's Jack Harbaugh, who garnered seven first-place votes and 148 total points.
The Eddie Robinson Award was established in 1987 by The Sports Network. The Award is named for legendary head coach Eddie Robinson, who retired in 1997 after 57 years at Grambling State University.