Welcome to the 2023 FCS Jersey Countdown. Leading up to Week 0 games on Aug. 26, HERO Sports will name the best returning FCS player by jersey number, 99-0.
Because team rosters are updated at different times across the country and to keep things consistent, jersey numbers are based on last season’s rosters.
36: Levi Janacaro, LB (Sr.) — Montana
Note: Jersey numbers are based on 2022 rosters. Janacaro is wearing No. 37 this fall.
Janacaro looks primed to be the next standout Montana linebacker. He’s also next to wear the No. 37 jersey, a prideful tradition where a Montana-born player passes the jersey number down to another Montana-born player after graduating.
Last season, Janacaro recorded 87 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks, six quarterback hurries, one pass breakup, and one forced fumble. He finished third on the team in tackles and is the leading returning tackler for this fall.
The 6-foot and 237-pounder, a Missoula native, will be a key player for the Griz. They lose their top two tacklers and three All-Americans from last year’s defense that allowed 21.3 points per game (No. 18 in the FCS).
“It feels really cool, and it’s just a blessing,” Janacaro said on receiving the No. 37 jersey. “Knowing all the guys that have worn that number before when I was growing up a Griz fan, always watching games and looking for that number, to be able to bear that responsibility is an honor. But along with that, it is a responsibility. People congratulate me, but really, the work is just beginning. It was a lot of work to get to this point, but now I feel like I’ve got to step it up a notch.”
After finishing 8-5 overall with a trip to the second round of the FCS playoffs, Montana ranks No. 16 in HERO Sports’ FCS Preseason Top 25.