Busy Week In The Books For Montana

Most high school kids would view a week off from school as an excuse to sleep in all day and relax. Nick Montana took unofficial visits to two major BCS schools and also brought in two new scholarship offers from big-time programs -- including one that hits close to home. Find out how the week went for Montana and what might be next for the quarterback.

After traveling the country while on a week-long break from school, Nick Montana now has some time to reflect.

That reflection has not been hurting for topics for the signal-caller from Westlake Village (Calif.) Oaks Christian. Montana took unofficial visits to Ohio State and then Texas, and along the way he picked up scholarship offers from Notre Dame and Alabama.

The fact that his recruitment continues to grow has caught Montana by surprise, he said.

"I really couldn't see this happening," he told BuckeyeSports.com. "I'm very fortunate. I'm taking it all seriously and I'll try to get down to the hard facts and find out if it's going to fit for me, if it's a good spot, if I can see myself there for four years if football doesn't work out and then academics."

While at OSU, Montana did not get a chance to meet with head coach Jim Tressel, who was out of town due to prior obligations. Montana said he was aware Tressel wouldn't be there but opted to take the trip anyway because it fit into his schedule.

Since the trip, Montana said he has corresponded with Tressel primarily via e-mail.

"He's just making sure they took care of me, and they did a great job of showing me around and getting me more acquainted with Ohio State," Montana said. "He gave me a little history on him and what his background is too. It was still great. It would've been awesome to sit down with him. Hopefully I can do that in the future."

Next up was his trip to Texas, a school Montana has been interested in despite not holding a scholarship offer from the Longhorns. Aside from that fact, Montana said he saw some similarities between the two programs and their head coaches in particular.

"They're pretty similar in what Coach Tressel and Coach (Mack) Brown have done with them and what they've done with their players," he said. "You can see a lot of similarities in how they develop their players on and off the field. That was a big plus. They're both huge campuses."

The Longhorns already have verbal commitments from two quarterbacks for their class of 2010 in Connor Wood from Houston Second Baptist and Case McCoy from Graham, Texas. Montana said Brown told him the coaches had targeted three quarterbacks they might be interested for this year's recruiting class.

Two of them have already committed, and Montana is the third. Montana said Brown has told him that he likely will not receive a scholarship offer unless either Wood or McCoy withdraws his verbal commitment.

The Buckeyes have told Montana that he is their top quarterback target for their class of 2010, and they have not offered scholarships to any other quarterbacks.

As his Texas trip was wrapping up, a school closer to Montana's heart entered the picture when Notre Dame issued him a scholarship offer. His father, Joe, played his college ball for the Fighting Irish and his older brother, Nate, is currently on the roster as a quarterback as well.

However, Nick said he will not take things like that into consideration when he makes a decision.

"It's cool, just like the rest of them," he said. "It hits a little closer to my heart with my dad and my brother there, but I'm going to look at everything. I'm going to try to look at everything evenly and not take any of that stuff into account. I'm just looking for the best fit for me."

The possibility of competing with his brother for playing time does not rule out the Irish, he said. Notre Dame head coach Charlie Weis spoke with Nate before offering Nick, he said.

"I have no problem competing with my brother and he has no problem with it either," he said. "I'd love to be on the same team with my brother, but we'll see what happens."

In addition to his two latest scholarship offers, Nick is starting to receive interest from USC. He attended a junior day hosted by the Trojans on Feb. 21.

It all adds up to a complicated picture – one that Nick said will not be solved anytime soon.

"It's still pretty wide open," he said.

As he tries to narrow his list and ultimately pick a school, Nick said he will primarily rely on his family to help him do so. That is not a guarantee that he will end up in South Bend, however.

"Definitely my parents will be the biggest influence on me," he said. "They've obviously had experiences I don't have. I go to them and they can help guide me, but they're not pushing me any way. They help me out. My dad's not pushing for Notre Dame or anything like that."

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