Montgomery happy to be a Dawg

With a full stable of backs already on the roster one would think a running back would have to be pretty special in order for Washington Head Coach Tyrone Willingham to offer a scholarship. That is exactly what Rancho Cordova (Calif.) Cordova running back James Montgomery is - special. was finally able to corral the elusive young man from the Central Valley for a few minutes to find out about his verbal commitment to the Huskies and what his plans are for the rest of the summer.

"I was cutting the grass and I was just sitting there thinking," Montgomery told Wednesday evening. "My last two choices were Washington and UCLA and I was thinking about it and that I would have been going to UCLA for all the wrong reasons. Once I realized that I just called up coach (Bob) Simmons and told him I was coming."

Montgomery made that call on Monday night and it came as a surprise to the Huskies new special teams and tight ends coach.

"He thought I was playing," Montgomery said with a laugh. "He was like, ‘Are you coming on August 6th?' because I was planning on coming up on August 6th (for a UW junior day). I was like, ‘No – I'm coming, coming.'

"He was like, ‘Is this a commitment?' and I was like, ‘Yeah!' That was when he started to realize I was serious."

Montgomery does plan to attend the Husky Junior Day, which happens to be the day before fall camp starts on August 6th. Before he could get off the phone with Simmons, Coach Willingham hopped on the line and was 'very happy', according to James.

"Everyone was really happy," he said. "They told me to be ready and that they were just happy I made my decision."

Originally, Montgomery had expected to take an unofficial visit to UCLA this weekend and his decision the week following the visit, but that trip is off at this point. "Nah, I'm not going to be taking that trip," Montgomery said in a matter-of-fact tone that left little doubt. "I haven't spoken to those coaches yet but I'm sure they know by now."

It seems as though the unofficial visit Montgomery took earlier this month to Montlake was the determining factor in his commitment to Washington. "I was telling my Grandpa when I left after my unofficial I was probably going to go to Washington. I was just waiting to see how I felt," Montgomery said. "My mom already knew so it wasn't a real big surprise or anything."

So what kind of a back is UW getting in Montgomery?

"Washington got a great player," said Cordova head coach Max Miller. "He's a great running back with great speed and great balance and great strength. He has all the keys to be one of the best backs in America, I believe." Miller also added that out of the 9 All-City backs, 4 All-Americans and one National Player of the Year (Former Oregon RB Kevin Wilhite) Cordova has produced, Montgomery is 'without question' the best back they've ever had.

Montgomery added, "I'm a little like Clinton Portis and a little like LaDanian Tomlinson. I like to cut back and stuff. I'm kind of like a slasher-type guy."

Montgomery, with a four-star rating, is considered the #5 running back in the West and #16 at his position nationally by He was also named the 24th-best player in the West regardless of position by

As the interview was ending Montgomery actually had a question for us. "So does everyone in Seattle love me yet?"

The answer to that question is an unqualified yes.

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