In front of local media, surrounded by his Oaks Christian School teammates, student body and supportive family, Nick Montana (Westlake Village, Calif./Oaks Christian) humbly accepted his Under Armour All-American jersey on Thursday.
Montana has put up great numbers behind center the past few seasons for the reigning division champion Lions while developing into an upper-echelon quarterback in this 2010 recruiting class. Yet, he deflected most of the attention at Thursday’s ceremony and attributed most of his success to the people in attendance.
We had a chance to sit back and talk football with the modest Under Armour All-American signal-caller.
1. What do you enjoy most about playing quarterback?
“I just like having the ball in my hands every play, being able to do most of the decision-making and knowing a lot relies on me. I kind of like the pressure, too. The win or loss usually goes on the quarterback, and I just feel I perform better in those situations.”
2. What’s the toughest part about playing the position?
“You got to know everything what everyone is doing, your own job plus 10 other guys on the field all the time. Probably the preparation part of it.”
3. What do you feel are your strengths as a quarterback? And where have you improved the most from your junior season?
“I think my strength is my accuracy. I don’t have the strongest [arm], but my arm’s strong enough to make all the throws. I just try to be as accurate as I can and put the ball in the right position every time.”
4. What’s your favorite route to throw, or route combination?
“I love throwing digs, comebacks and skinny posts. I like going downfield.”
5. What areas would you like to improve on for the college level?
“Reading defenses and recognizing coverages. And I definitely have to get a lot bigger.”
6. From a scouting standpoint, we feel you’ve made a great choice in Washington. What sold you on the program both on and off the field?
“I liked coach [Steve] Sarkisian ever since he was at USC and the offense that he ran, just the simplicity of it and you always see guys getting wide open. The whole coaching staff he has put together up there, it’s a great fit for me because they’re high-energy, young guys with intensity. I like the excitement they bring to practice.”
8. What current or past quarterback do you model your game around or enjoy watching?
“I used to watch Matt Leinart a lot when he was at USC and Brady Quinn, growing up.”
9. What’s the best trash talking you have heard against you?
“I have had a lot of things with my last name. I remember we were playing Venice, I think, last year. I always warm up around by [the] opposite stands and someone was yelling it’s going to be a bad night for you tonight. You don’t have no Jerry Rice.”