The Chicago Bears’ top 2019 draft pick has received a further reward for a superb final season with the Iowa State Cyclones.
David Montgomery will look to make a major impact for the Chicago Bears as a rookie, having left a lasting legacy at Iowa State that was added to when he was named the Big 12 male sportsperson of the year.
The award winner is selected by a media panel, with the decision based on athletic performance, academic achievement and citizenship.
Montgomery had a stunning final season in Ames, racking up 1,216 rushing yards and scoring 13 touchdowns, and also served with distinction as a team captain for the Cyclones.
Iowa State coach Matt Campbell said on the Cyclones’ official website:
“The impact David had on the Iowa State football program, the university and to our great community is impossible to quantify. He will undoubtedly be remembered as one of the all-time greats to wear the Cardinal and Gold, but his legacy will extend far beyond the field. He truly led the culture change within our walls.”
Changing the culture is unlikely to be a task on the docket in Chicago. After a division title and a playoff appearance, it will instead be a case of maintaining the winning culture head coach Matt Nagy fostered in 2018.
Montgomery’s apparent dedication to his craft should help them do that. Credited with encouraging other players to take part in late-night film sessions at Iowa State, Montgomery will quickly earn the respect of his peers if he displays the same kind of commitment in the pros.
The Bears, having traded up to take Montgomery in the third round, clearly did not need any further affirmation he was the right player for them. However, Montgomery winning an award such as this speaks to his qualities on and off the field. The running back position is not valued as highly as it once was but Montgomery will be a steal for the Bears if his career in Chicago mirrors his time at Iowa State.