Montgomery considering transfer to USC

Former Cordova High School running back James Montgomery was one of the top running backs in the country coming out of high school in 2006. After originally committing to Washington, the talented back signed with California. However, Montgomery is looking around once again and is considering a possible transfer to South Carolina. Read inside to see how interested Montgomery is in the Gamecocks.


The 5'10", 200 pound Montgomery originally chose Cal over programs such as Nebraska, Oregon, UCLA, and Washington. As the Bears' second string running back last season, Montgomery was able to rack up 171 yards and two touchdowns on 36 carries. But something just didn't seem right.

"It just basically wasn't a good fit for me. I don't know, it was just affecting me off the football field. It was affecting everything I was doing. So, I just talked to my family and decided it was the best thing for me (to transfer)."

In high school Montgomery was a phenom in the California prep ranks and rushed for an impressive 2,183 yards for 35 touchdowns. Now, the Rancho Cordova, CA native finds himself going through the recruiting process again.

According to Montgomery, he is currently considering Florida, South Carolina, and Washington State, while there has been some contact with Boston College, too.

Montgomery, who was last timed at 4.46 seconds in the forty-yard dash, recently made the coast-to-coast trip from California to South Carolina during his spring break.

"I liked it a lot. I've got a lot of family that lives in Lancaster, SC, so it's like right down the street. It was pretty cool; I like the campus. I like the stadium. Practice went by smooth."

South Carolina running backs coach Robert Gilespie has been recruiting the standout back for the Gamecocks.

"I think he's a real cool dude. He's young. He's energetic. He seemed like a pretty good teacher out on the field," Montgomery said of his possible future position coach. "We haven't talked about (how I fit in the offense). We just talked about coming in and competing when it's my time next spring."

Montgomery also says there were certain things about South Carolina that led him to give them a closer look when he decided a transfer was in order.

"I've always liked Steve Spurrier's style of coaching. I've always liked the way he ran an offense. It's a chance to come to the SEC."

Montgomery also made the trip to Gainesville to see Urban Meyer's Gators while he was on the east coast.

"Florida is Florida. It's a top program. My boy Carl (Moore, UF receiver), he goes there, so he already told me a lot about it. It was a pretty cool place. I got to sit down and talk to the running backs coach just like I did at South Carolina. He seemed pretty cool. It reminded me a lot of Cal, how they run practice."

The last school Montgomery is giving consideration to is Washington State. Montgomery has not made a visit there, but plans on taking one soon. The talented all-around back explained what he is looking to see from the Pac-10 school.

"I'm just going to check it out. They were one of the first schools to show interest in me when I decided I was going to transfer. And I already know what the Pac-10 is like, so I'm just going look and check it out."

Montgomery says Cal head coach Jeff Tedford has cleared him to transfer to any school — even those that Cal will play in-conference.

Montgomery, who was ranked the no. 19 running back in the country by Scout.com out of high school, described what type of player he is.

"I try to be an all-around (running back). I take pride in pass protection and catching the ball. Every running back can run the ball so I just try to do all the other things as best as I can."

Montgomery hopes to have a decision about his future school somewhere within the next month. While he is not ready to make a decision yet, one school stands out for him at this time.

"I like South Carolina, a lot. I'm still trying to feel it out, but I feel like I'm closer with them right now."

Wherever Montgomery ends up, he plans to enroll for summer school to go through that program's summer conditioning program. He will then have two years of eligibility remaining after sitting out a season.


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