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Luke & Ryan Montgomery recap weekend visit to Penn State

In-person recruiting is back for one week only, and Penn State hit the ground running Sunday hosting an Underclassmen Showcase that brought about 250 up-and-coming prospects to State College.

Class of 2023 offensive lineman Luke Montgomery, from Findley, Ohio, was one of the top players to make the trip. Already earning more than 30 verbal scholarship offers, including one from the Nittany Lions, Montgomery chose not to camp, electing to prioritize his time touring facilities and meeting with the people that make Penn State’s football program what it is. Specifically, he spoke highly of his time with Phil Trautwein, who coaches the offensive line.

“Coach Traut knows everything. He’s been in the [NFL] and he’s a younger guy. I think his personality is great. He just gets it,” Montgomery said. “He’s also been in my position before, so it was awesome to just be able to sit there and check out some film with him. We talked about a ton of things, even life after college football. Whether I were to make it to the NFL or not one day, they want to help me just become a better person, a better father someday, a better role model to people, stuff like that.”

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The Penn State Nittany Lion football staff hosted Luke Montgomery and his brother, Ryan Montgomery, for a visit Sunday.
Ryan Montgomery (left) and brother Luke made their way to State College Sunday. Both now hold offers from Penn State.

Luke, who already holds a four-star rating and a spot in the Rivals100, is shaping up to be one of the top prospects in his class. He announced a top 12 just last month, that, in addition to Penn State, included Alabama, Clemson, Georgia, Michigan, Michigan State, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Ohio State, South Carolina, Stanford and Tennessee. However, he’s no longer the only teenager in his family to earn a handful of scholarship offers, as his younger brother, Ryan, is also starting to grab the attention of coaches.

A member of the Class of 2025, Ryan hasn’t even played a snap of varsity football yet and he already holds scholarship offers from Georgia Tech, Michigan, Tennessee and Toledo. Penn State became the fifth program to make that move yesterday, as the younger Montgomery camped with offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich and the rest of the staff.

“He was awesome. Super-relatable guy,” Ryan Montgomery said, referring to Yurcich. “I was in the meeting room with him and got a good feel for what he’s like. One minute, he’s super chill, then the next minute he’s up and energetic. But he was awesome. He really knows his stuff and he has a great relationship with my quarterback coach, so they’re pretty much on the same page.”

Back in October, Luke and his father, Mike, took a self-guided tour of State College the same day that Penn State hosted Ohio State. He also met up with a few of Penn State’s committed players while in town, including Ken Talley and Drew Shelton. However Ryan did not make the trip that day, so this was his first time seeing University Park.

“Obviously, the campus is beautiful. It was really nice and I like that it’s all compacted. I think they said they can walk from one end to the other in about 12 minutes,” Ryan Montgomery said. “The facilities were awesome, and the coaching staff was great, too. They’re all very relatable and energetic. Also, Coach [James] Franklin gave us a powerpoint at the very beginning and you can tell he really cares. It wasn’t just about football, but also life after football.”

With Penn State being the first Power Five program to offer Luke, it’s become clear that the Nittany Lions should be a serious contender for both boys moving forward. In fact, dad made it clear that a few things stand out about Penn State already.

“I’d say there are two things that have been most impressive about them,” said Mike Montgomery. “The first is the culture there. It’s very impressive. Everyone there is very positive, very energetic and very genuine. Everyone is on the same page and going the right direction, so I give a lot of credit there to James. It sure seems to me that the entire staff, from the coordinators to the position coaches and on down, everyone is relatable and genuine. When we walked in there, there were probably 25 people there to greet us. I think maybe one other school did that? So, just the little things like that stand out. Also, it’s not just them staging it to stage it. It’s genuine. So, just the vibe there, that family culture. A lot of people say that, but I really feel a difference at Penn State. I think the boys would echo that, too.

“The second thing is how involved Coach Franklin was from start to finish. We started the day with a powerpoint presentation with him, which he said is basically all the questions he’s been asked over the years. That probably lasted 45 minutes, and he did that entire presentation. We’ve seen that at other schools, but never by the head coaches. It usually isn’t even by a position coach or anyone like that. That’s impressive. He told us after that he’d be around [during the visit] and he was. He’s in the mix with us the entire day, and I can tell you for a fact that no other head coach does that on these visits. I’m very impressed with that.”


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