Griz Beat Cal Poly-4.JPG (copy)

Montana linebacker Dante Olson, right, tackles Cal Poly quarterback Khaleel Jenkins in the second quarter. Olson lead the defense with 24 tackles during the game.

MISSOULA — Montana linebacker Dante Olson was named an FCS first-team All-American by the Associated Press on Tuesday.

Olson, who is one of three finalists for the Buck Buchanan Award as the top defensive player in the FCS, is the lone Grizzly and Big Sky Conference player on the first-team defense.

"It's an honor and a blessing to become an All-American," Olson said in a news release. "It would never have been possible without my coaches and teammates, however."

The Medford, Oregon, native is the Grizzlies' 93rd AP All-American and the first to earn first-team honors since defensive end Tyrone Holmes in 2015.

Olson, an All-Big Sky first-team selection, broke the program's single-season tackles (151) record and averaged 13.7 tackles per game, the best mark in the nation. He chipped in 11 tackles for loss, six sacks, five quarterback hurries, three forced fumbles, three pass breakups and two interceptions in 11 games.

In total, nine Big Sky Conference players made one of the AP's three All-America teams.

Joining Olson on the first team were Cal Poly senior running back Joe Protheroe and Eastern Washington senior kicker Roldan Alcobendas.

Making the second team were Weber State senior offensive lineman Iosua Opeta, Eastern Washington senior offensive lineman Spencer Blackburn, UC Davis senior wide receiver Keelan Doss and Eastern Washington senior defensive lineman Jay-Tee Tiuli.

The third team included Weber State senior defensive lineman Filipe Sitake and Cal Poly senior defensive back Dominic Frasch.

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Frank Gogola covers Griz football and prep sports for the Missoulian. Follow him on Twitter @FrankGogola or email him at Frank.Gogola@406mtsports.com.

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