The Dickinson State Blue Hawks signed 45 players on national signing day. The state they signed the most players from was Montana.

The Blue Hawks nabbed 18 recruits from the “Treasure State.”

The 18 signees from Montana are the most the Blue Hawks have signed under head coach Pete Stanton.

Highlighting the list are two quarterbacks who will vie to take over with the absence of longtime starter Hayden Gibson.

Payton Hauge, out of Culbertson High, threw for over 3,000 yards in 8-man in his career along with 58 touchdowns.

Bridger Grovom is the second quarterback out of Montana, and he played at Helena Capital High. He was a two-year starter and earned offensive MVP during both seasons. He was a second-team all-state selection in 2019. He finished his career with 4,315 passing yards and 36 touchdowns.

“Bridger Grovom is one of the top quarterbacks in Montana. ... We will give him and all the freshmen the opportunity to come in and compete,” said Stanton. “It just takes a while for every position and especially quarterback to learn the system. Grovom was a guy that was recruited hard in Montana and he played at the highest level of football in Montana.”

Hauge’s high school teammate Zane McCormick, a linebacker, also signed with the Blue Hawks. He earned all-state honors his junior and senior seasons.

Dickinson State also signed duos out of Glacier, Dawson County, Park City and Huntley Project high schools.

From Glacier, Maddox Fucci and Ethan Baines inked. Baines went to Montana State out of high school and did not play football, but he realized he wanted to be a part of the sport again. Fucci is a 6-foot-3, 245-pound offensive lineman, and Baines is a linebacker.

Kirby Basta, an offensive lineman, and Nelson Crisafulli, a linebacker, went to Dawson County. Basta was a first-team all-conference selection and a captain, while Crisafulli also played running back and he ran for over 1,800 yards and 27 touchdowns in his prep career. He will be joining his brother, Jameson Crisafulli who will be a senior defensive back for the Blue Hawks in 2020.

“We are excited. They come from a great family,” said Stanton. “His brother is a tremendous worker and couldn’t be a better person. Nelson is a tough, physical runner. He is one of the top wrestlers in the state as well.”

From Park City, Austin Dennis and Troy Fiscarelli will be joining the defensive side of the ball. Dennis was a three-sport star in high school and his 260-pound frame projects to defensive line in college. Fiscarelli is coming off an injury his senior year, but he will play linebacker for the Blue Hawks.

Finally, Rylan Devries and Chris Kistler signed from Huntley Project. DeVries played quarterback and free safety in high school, but he will play defensive back for Dickinson State. Kistler will play linebacker and joins his older brother Cory, who currently plays at Dickinson State.

At tight end, 6-foot-1, 215-pound Hunter Morse is from Billings West. He was a two-way starter in high school.

From Great Falls, Tyson Krahe was a captain and he will play defensive back in college.

Brock Jones is from Hamilton High and he will play linebacker. He played in two state championship games with Hamilton.

Austin Heimer was a team captain and three-sport star at Red Lodge High. He projects to play defensive back for the Blue Hawks.

From Shelby High, Mark Clark is the heaviest player the Blue Hawks signed. The 300-pound offensive lineman will be an anchor up front.

“He is a big, physical kid,” said Stanton. “He is a guy that when he gets his body on you, he is going to be able to push and press.”

Only one of two running backs to sign, Jay Johnson is from Shepherd High. He was a second-team all-state selection his junior year.

Lastly, from right across the North Dakota border, Tel Lunde, a defensive back from Wibaux County, signed to play defensive back. He was a four-year starter in high school and all-state three times. Lunde’s dad was his high school football coach at Wibaux County.