California RB Offers A Lot To Cornhuskers

After Nebraska's 5-6 record in 2004, many Cornhusker fans around the country were wishing the Big Red had a few more Cory Rosses on the team this past year. Well, Nebraska hasn't quite found an exact Cory clone, but if you're looking for a shorter speedster that wears the number four, the Cornhuskers may have just found your man.

James Montgomery shares a few common traits with current Nebraska Cornhusker runningback Cory Ross.  While James is a little taller at 5' 10" and a little lighter at 195 pounds, Montgomery and Ross both share blazing speed as James clocks in at a 4.4 40 yard dash.  He currently benches 305 pounds while squatting 425 and carries a 3.0 GPA in the classroom.

During his junior campaign, Montgomery led the entire Sacramento area in rushing with 215 carries for 1,915 yards scoring 35 touchdowns. He also notched up 10 tackles as an occasional nickel back for his Cordova squad.  During a game against Vacaville, he ran for 380 yards and nine touchdowns.  James' efforts saw him named the Sierra Valley Conference Offensive MVP and he was also a first team all-city selection by The Sacramento Bee, first team Sac-Joaquin all-section pick along with being named a 2005 Scholar-Athlete by the Sacramento Valley Chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame.

Montgomery claims offers from Arizona, ASU, Washington, Washington State, Oregon, Nebraska, Ole Miss, UCLA and Northwestern along with interest from Tennessee.  He claims no favorites at this time and plans to camp at USC and Washington along with another possible location later on down the line.  He cites his strengths as his good breakaway speed, being able to stay north and south on his runs and his ability to cut well.

James mentioned that currently, it appears one of the Pac-10 schools that has offered him is showing up as the school recruiting him the hardest.  "It's probably Arizona.  They say it's a good place to be, they want me to come in and start early.  They're giving me a lot of handwritten letters," he said.  So is the prospect of starting early somewhere enticing for James?  "It's not a big thing.  It'd be great but it doesn't have to be there, I can see if I have to learn," he said.  Montgomery also expounded on the major factor during his recruitment.  "Being comfortable, that's the main thing.  I don't want to go to a place where I feel uncomfortable," he said.  Distance will not play a factor in James' decision as he said, "I'll play anywhere in the country."

The knowledge of Nebraska varies from prospect to prospect as for one reason or another, they may not be tuned into the program as much as others.  James would fall into the category of those who studied up on the Cornhuskers.  "They changed their offense, they're like 105-8 at home since 1988.  Their tradition, they seat about 80,000 in their stadium, they had 64,000 at the spring game, and they signed Marlon Lucky," he said of his knowledge of the Cornhuskers.

Speaking of Marlon Lucky, the prospect of having some great talent around them may sway a recruit one way or another depending on if he wants to start immediately or, in some cases, at all.  James, however, would be eager to be thrown into such a situation.  "Almost all of the teams have two good backs, it's not really a factor because anywhere you go, and they're going to bring in another guy. Competition is great anyway because if I were to come in, I could make him (Marlon) a better player and he could make me a better player, plus he'd be in the system for a year so he could help me improve," said Montgomery.

Nebraska has been on the ball as far as sending James plenty of handwritten correspondence along with the typical informational literature.  Interestingly enough, James took it upon himself to make sure Nebraska knew about him.  "I was getting a lot about their graduation rate and they were going to be in the area.  I just sent them my tape to see what would happen and Coach Callahan liked it so he gave me the offer," he said.  Montgomery also likes the prospect of playing for a coach who has made the transition from the west coast to the Midwest in Callahan.

James is looking to line up a visit so that he can check out the University of Nebraska for himself.  "I think I'm going to try to get out to Nebraska though because I was talking to Coach Callahan about that," he said.  Montgomery looks to take an unofficial visit during the summertime.  We'll be sure to keep you all updated on this excitable prospect from California as he continues on through the recruiting process.


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