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Originally published June 10, 2009 at 12:00 AM | Page modified June 10, 2009 at 12:24 AM

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Quarterback Nick Montana commits to UW

Oaks Christian (Westlake Village, Calif.) coach Bill Redell said Tuesday that quarterback Nick Montana, son of Hall of Famer Joe Montana, has committed to Washington.

Seattle Times staff reporter

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A few days after missing out on one of the biggest-name quarterbacks in the state, the Washington Huskies rebounded by getting a commitment from the son of one of the biggest name quarterbacks in football history.

Nick Montana of Oaks Christian High in Westlake Village, Calif., and the son of Hall of Famer Joe Montana, said Tuesday night he has given a commitment to UW and will sign with the Huskies next February.

He is entering his senior year at Oaks Christian, which will play Sept. 18 at Skyline against the Spartans and Jake Heaps, who last week spurned the Huskies and committed to BYU.

Montana said the decision of Heaps to go elsewhere had nothing to do with his commitment.

"Not at all," he said. "I just wanted to see the place first-hand."

He was able to do that last weekend when he visited UW along with his parents, meeting with Huskies coach Steve Sarkisian and QB Jake Locker, among others. The Montana family and Sarkisian have known each other since the coach worked as an assistant at USC grooming the likes of Carson Palmer, Matt Leinart and Mark Sanchez.

"He's an awesome coach," Nick Montana said. "You just have to look at all the guys he's put into the pros."

The 6-foot-1, 185-pound Montana is rated as the No. 13 QB in the nation by and had offers from Notre Dame, his father's alma mater, as well as Louisiana State, Ohio State, Stanford, Alabama and Georgia.

Montana said he had originally planned to take much of the summer to make his decision but that his visit to UW last weekend "made everything a lot easier. It cleared everything up."

He also said he wasn't worried about the team's 0-12 record a year ago saying he feels there is a lot of young talent on the way.

"He [Sarkisian] is going to get the place turned around," Montana said.

Montana said his father had no complaints that his son wouldn't follow his South Bend footsteps, saying "he's pumped up as well."


Montana said he called Sarkisian about 7 p.m. Tuesday to tell him the news.

He is the first quarterback to commit to Washington for the Class of 2010, the 10th player overall, a class that in early rankings has been considered among the top 10 in the country. The addition of Montana will only add to that luster and help establish that Sarkisian is making an impact in recruiting at UW.

Bill Redell, coach at Oaks Christian, said Montana "is very fast. He's got great feet. He's not necessarily going to run, but he can throw it on the run. He's similar to his dad in how he can throw on the run. He's got a strong arm and great touch and he's very intelligent. He's a very good leader and he's popular with the other players."

He threw for more than 2,500 yards last season in leading Oaks Christian to a 14-0 record.

Redell said Oaks Christian has six players who have received Division I offers, four of whom have offers from UW, including Montana.

Another, offensive tackle Erik Kohler, is due to take an unofficial visit to UW this weekend.

With Montana going to UW and Heaps leaving, there could be some fans at the Skyline-Oaks Christian game who may feel compelled to root for the team from out of the state.

"Hopefully," Montana said with a laugh. "I'm excited. It's going to be a good one."

Trevor Gretzky, the son of hockey great Wayne Gretzky, is also a quarterback at Oaks Christian.

Bob Condotta: 206-515-5699 or

Copyright © 2009 The Seattle Times Company

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