MISSOULA — Montana got its second commitment from a top-10 in-state recruit this month when Missoula Sentinel senior-to-be TJ Rausch committed to the Grizzlies on Friday afternoon.
Rausch is a 6-foot-3, 175-pounder who's rated as a 2-star wide receiver and the No. 9 recruit in the state by 247Sports. He announced his decision on Twitter, 23 days after he shared that the Griz had offered him on June 3.
"Excited to announce that I have committed to the University of Montana to further my football and academic career," Rausch wrote in a Twitter post. "Thanks to @Coach_Hauck and @coach_rosy for allowing me to fulfill my dream! @GrizCoachGreen #GoGriz #RTD #Committed."
Rausch had 37 receptions for 546 yards and eight touchdowns in 12 games as a junior, according to MaxPreps. He also played cornerback, tallying 19 tackles, two tackles for loss and one pass breakup that season. His play helped the Spartans, coached by former Grizzly wide receiver Dane Oliver, make the State AA semifinals in 2019.
Rausch had self-reported offers from Div. II Colorado School of Mines and NAIA programs Montana Tech, Carroll College and Montana Western.
Rausch becomes Montana's second-known recruit in the class of 2021. He joins Sentinel's Jace Klucewich, who transferred from Frenchtown for his senior season and committed to the Griz on June 9. Klucewich is rated as a 3-star athlete and the No. 5 recruit in the state by 247Sports.
Recruiting this year has posed a unique challenge at the Division I level because of the coronavirus pandemic. In-person visits between coaches and recruits have been suspended since the middle of March and were extended on Thursday through Aug. 31. Summer camps for recruits on campus have been canceled by the NCAA as the dead period has been periodically extended.