David Montgomery say he’ll balance the business of playimgna big game with the outside stuff that goes along with it
Randy Peterson, email@example.com
AMES, Ia. — I’ll never forget the first words David Montgomery’s mother said to me back when I talked to her about a profile I was writing.
“Go ahead, challenge him to do anything,” David’s rightfully proud mom, Roberta Feltha-Mitchell, said. “Then prepare to be defeated.”
She knew that David, one of the five children she raised nearly by herself, would do great things. So did everyone else who had a piece of making Iowa State’s star running back so good.
“David’s a culture-changer,” former Iowa State running backs coach Lou Ayeni told me for that column. “His work ethic and desire are infectious.”
As a Cyclone, that work ethic and desire resulted in consecutive 1,000-yard rushing seasons. It resulted in so many positives that it’s now time to raise the stakes .
It’s time to see how he fares in the NFL.
Montgomery has opted for the 2019 NFL Draft, forgoing his senior season, and no one will fault him for it.
He has nothing left to prove in college. He wasn’t healthy after the first play of the season — in that canceled game against South Dakota State, and there’s always that risk again, should he choose college over making money.
Health isn’t guaranteed, so if you’ve got the NFL folks saying you’ll be a second-day draft choice, you take it.
Montgomery rushed for 1,216 yards this season despite missing a game. He was violent with the ball, proven by leading the nation the past two seasons in forcing tacklers to miss, according to Pro Football Focus.
That’s the only vicious aspect of good-guy Montgomery.
“People will judge David by what he does on the football field, but there’s another part of him that’s pretty darn impressive,” coach Matt Campbell once said. “David is relentless at his craft. We have to almost literally get him out of this (football) facility at night, because he wants to be here constantly.”
Montgomery is an Eagle Scout. He collected toiletries for the homeless back in his native Cincinnati. When he wasn’t doing that, he helped his high school athletics director prepare the gymnasium for basketball games.
“There’s never been a silver spoon in David’s mouth,” said Tina May-Tuck, the now-retired athletics director at Mount Healthy High School, where Montgomery attended. “David told me that for his Eagle Scout project, that he wanted to do something to help the homeless — and he went out and did it.”
He wanted to play pro football, too, and now he’s got his shot.
And when it comes to that mportant one-on-one interview with the GMs and coaches? He’ll ace them.
“David’s never been even been tempted to do something wrong,” his mother told me. “He watched several of his friends do the wrong things, but David kept himself around positive people.
“Football’s always been his go-to. It was something he’s always been good at. It was all he ever even thought about, until I got him into the Boy Scouts.”
So what now for Iowa State? That’s the 2019 offseason storyline.
Who gets Brock Purdy’s first handoff of 2019 against Northern Iowa on Aug. 31?
Well, there are veterans Sheldon Croney, Johnnie Lang and Kene Nwangwu. By this fall, you can add freshman recruits Jirehl Brock and Breece Hall to the puzzle.
2019 RECRUITING CLASS:The list of Iowa State signees
And also by fall, fans just might be watching one of Iowa State’s best running backs carry the ball on Sunday television, because, as his mom says:
“Challenge him to do anything … then prepare to be defeated.”
Iowa State columnist Randy Peterson has been with the Register for parts of five decades. Randy writes opinion and analysis of Iowa State football and basketball. You can reach Randy at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @RandyPete.
Source: Des Moines Register