Our next prospect interview is with South Carolina Defensive Back Steven Montac. Montac is a 5’10”, 186 pound corner who crushes receivers and makes plays on the ball.
Career Stats: 130 total tackles, 5 tackles for a loss, 10 pass deflections, 3 interceptions, and 3 forced fumbles.
Montac interviewed exclusively with Stampede Blue to talk about walking on at South Carolina, his playmaking ability, and who he models himself after in the NFL.
ZH: So you decided to walk on at South Carolina after attending Coffeyville Community College. Why did you decide to walk on there rather than go somewhere else?
SM: I kind just trusted what T-Rob (Coach Travaris Robinson) and Coach Muschamp said. They just told me to come here and work hard and I’ll earn a scholarship. I also had a scholarship from Boise State but I just felt like South Carolina was my best option. It was closer to home too.
ZH: You were given the Unselfish Teammate Award in 2018 after the season. What did that mean to you?
SM: That’s a major deal because I was one of the most unselfish guys, always just trying to help out my teammates and push my teammates to make sure they were always good and everything. Try to help out all the freshman and all of the younger guys that I could.
ZH: After a strong senior season, you didn’t receive a combine invite. Was this disappointing for you or a chance to work harder and improve?
SM: It was both. I was kind of disappointed because I had a good career. There’s nothing you can do, it was out of my hands, so just keep working and I’m looking forward to my Pro Day.
ZH: Speaking of your Pro Day, I saw that you are doing a fundraiser Leaping for St. Judes at your Pro Day. Can you tell me more about that?
SM: It’s a fundraiser that I have going on with my agency (Athletes Trust). The amount of inches that I jump is the amount of dollars that are pledged to be donated or you can donate however much you want to donate. It’s a donation that goes to the kids at the hospital.
ZH: You are a bit of a tweener on the field with your size, would you say you are more of a corner or safety in the NFL?
SM: I’m more of a nickel. A slot corner type.
ZH: You were named the Special Teams Player of Spring Practice for South Carolina last year. Do you think special teams is an area you can contribute to right away in the NFL?
SM: Oh yeah. I can do all special teams from kick-offs, punt return, punt coverage... I push myself to perform on special teams. Not everybody gets an opportunity to make their name on the defensive or offensive side when they first enter the league so I know I’m going to have to take special teams very serious in the NFL.
ZH: You are surprisingly a big hitter for a player your size. Is that an important part of your game?
SM: Yeah, that and just getting the ball and being a turnover machine. I’m undersized so you know I gotta be more aggressive than anybody else so I try to bring as much pain as I can when I hit people.
ZH: You told me back before the season that you are the best ballhawk in the Nation. Do you still think that you are the best playmaker in this class?
SM: Of course, of course. The best turnover machine in this draft. I definitely, definitely think that.
ZH: What is your best trait going into the NFL? Is it your plamaking ability?
SM: My ballhawking ability and my knowledge of the game and just learning the defense and knowing the defense. I was the smartest person on the team on defense so I guess I would just point to that.
ZH: Which NFL player do you model your game after most?
SM: Tyrann Mathieu and I look at Kenny Moore too. I really like Kenny Moore, I’ve been watching him a lot this year.
ZH: Oh I love that you mention Kenny Moore, that’s my favorite player in football right there. He’s legit man.
SM: Yeah he definitely is. I like a lot of smaller, quick guys and just try to model my game after them. But I also really like watching Tyrann Mathieu.
ZH: Which is better in your opinion; delivering a big hit over the middle on a receiver or getting an interception?
SM: Actually a forced fumble for me. I just like taking the ball from someone. It’s like saying whatever you got, it’s all mine now.
ZH: Final question for you man, in this defensive back class, why should my team draft Steven Montac?
SM: Because I’m the smartest player in the Draft right now on the defensive side. I have the best ballhawking skills. I’m going to bring that over to the NFL too. I’m only going to get smarter and better even.