MISSOULA — Montana quarterback Andrew Selle suffered a career-ending injury in the Grizzlies’ 28-25 win over Sacramento State, coach Robin Pflugrad said.
“It’s a big loss and a tough deal for our team and I know our players are taking the news very hard,” Pflugrad said in a statement released Monday. “He is our inspirational leader and he was our summer leader.”
The Missoulian reports Selle left the field late in the second quarter of Saturday’s homecoming game with an injury to his right (throwing) shoulder. He was seen on the sideline later with his arm in a sling. School officials did not release any information on the injury.
Selle, a senior from Billings, was 14-3 as a starter at Montana and was a preseason candidate for the Walter Payton Award given to the top offensive player in the Football Championship Subdivision.
Last season, he passed for 3,043 yards and 28 touchdowns, leading the Big Sky in passing efficiency and taking the Griz to the FCS championship game against Villanova.
“It’s a tough deal, and any time a career is ended short — much shorter than you expected — it’s very difficult to deal with emotionally,” Selle said Monday afternoon as he watched practice. “It’s still early on and maybe it hasn’t quite hit me yet.
“I had a little talk with the team here before practice and just reiterated to them how excited that I still am about our team and how excited I am to be a part of the team and that I’ll be out there for them,” he said. “Though I can’t play on the field on Saturdays, I’ll be right there with them and help out on the sideline, and try to be a coach out there and help out with the team every way I can.”
Selle had a few thoughts when asked about some of his fondest moments in a Griz uniform.
“Obviously the first time you get in the game and the first time you throw for a touchdown is always exciting,” he said. “Our playoff run that we had last year. The incredible comeback against South Dakota State, the big win against Stephen F. Austin, and then that night game with Appalachian State. Those are memories that will stick with me forever.
“Playing in two national championship games, even though we kind of came out on the losing end of both of them are great experiences that I know I will remember forever,” Selle said.