After exhibiting flashes of greatness during his freshman season, expectations were sky-high for sophomore receiver Ty Montgomery in 2012. But though Stanford surpassed expectations as a team this year, Montgomery struggled. He dropped a few key passes early in the year and was plagued by injuries late in the season.
It all amounted to a 23 reception, 187-yard season. Montgomery's receiving yardage was around 50 percent of what it was in 2012.
Nonetheless, Stanford hopes that the bowl practices will allow Montgomery to regain his health - and, perhaps, some lost confidence. Cardinal Sports Report caught up with the talented receiver after a recent Rose Bowl practice to discuss his health and sophomore campaign.
Cardinal Sports Report: I know you've been dealing with some injuries throughout the year. How are you feeling now?
Ty Montgomery: Pretty good, getting better every day. Feeling really good right now, it's the best I've felt today.
CSR: I know Coach Shaw was saying that during bowl practices last year (prior to the Fiesta Bowl) you made a significant leap forward. Is that something you're eyeing this year, trying to get everything rolling again?
TM: Yeah. Just the time that we have in between games I want to make sure that I do everything I can to get my body back right.
CSR: How has your offense been different since Kevin Hogan took over?
TM: It's still the same offense. Run the ball, run the ball to open up the pass. We haven't been doing anything different. He's been playing well, putting the ball in the right spots, making the right decisions.
CSR: With the possibility that a few of your tight ends will be heading off to the NFL after this year, is that something where the wide receiver unit as a whole kind of comes together and thinks that they, we're going to need to be a major part of the offense next year?
TM: Yeah, definitely. We recognize that. Our tight ends are really good, we recognize that and we know that we need to step up to still be successful next year.
CSR: From your perspective, how would you assess your season (on an individual level)?
TM: Not the season I wanted to have. With the strides that I made at the end of last season I was hoping to do some big things this year, but I haven't. It's up to God, it's not up to me, and I'm just really happy the team is where it is right now.
CSR: Is there anything you've identified in terms of maybe working on whatever was the problem this year?
TM: I mean besides the injuries that happened, something I can't control, just mentally not putting any pressure on myself and getting back to the basics, playing football. That's what I got recruited to do, not to think, to play ball, so that's what I want to do.
CSR: on the flip side, going to the Rose Bowl, you guys have fulfilled a goal that you have every year. What does that mean to you?
TM: It's a great feeling. It's our team goal to win the Pac-12 and get to the Rose Bowl and we did exactly that, so now we just have to go out and win it.