Nate Montana leaving the Grizzlies

2012-05-15T17:23:00Z 2014-10-03T14:28:07Z Nate Montana leaving the GrizzliesBy FRITZ NEIGHBOR of the Missoulian

Nate Montana, the Notre Dame transfer quarterback who suited up for the Montana Grizzlies last fall, has decided to transfer again, Griz coach Mick Delaney confirmed Tuesday.

Delaney said Montana, who played in eight games for the Grizzlies, is headed to West Virginia Wesleyan, an NCAA Division II school in Buckhannon, W.Va.

Delaney, who took over the Griz when Robin Pflugrad was fired in March, said Montana was seeking more playing time.

“He asked for a waiver as a fifth-year senior transfer, and he’s going to do that,” Delaney said. “I just wish him good luck with everything. He wants to be on the field and he’ll get that opportunity there.

“I’m sure he’ll enjoy the experience of getting to play.”

Montana, the son of Hall of Fame quarterback Joe Montana, came to Missoula last spring from Notre Dame, where he’d fallen down the depth chart after earning a scholarship in 2010.

West Virginia Wesleyan, whose nickname is the Bobcats, would be Montana’s fourth school: He began at Notre Dame, his dad’s alma mater, and then spent a season at Pasadena (Calif.) Community College before going back to Notre Dame.

He landed at UM in time to compete in the Grizzlies’ 2011 spring drills. In June that year he was arrested in Missoula and charged with DUI. Montana was able to get the charge reduced to reckless driving.

He completed 26 of 42 passes for 274 yards and two touchdowns last season for the 11-3 Griz, while backing up Jordan Johnson. He was intercepted once.

A phone call to Nate Montana wasn’t immediately returned.

Montana’s departure leaves the Griz with four quarterbacks: Johnson, Shay Smithwick-Hann, Trent McKinney and Gerald Kemp. The Grizzlies also signed Brady Gustafson out of Billings West; he’ll be a freshman this fall.

Fritz Neighbor can be reached at 523-5247 or at

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