James Montgomery completed his third season at Sacramento State in 2016. Montgomery took over as the team's running backs in 2016 after serving as an offensive assistant the past two years.
In 2016, Montgomery helped lead Jordan Robinson to all-Big Sky honors. The senior rushed for 996 yards and 13 touchdowns while averaging 6.1 yards per carry. Robinson closed the season by rushing for at least 100 yards in four consecutive games where he amassed 659 yards and 10 touchdowns during that stretch. Fellow senior Demetrius Warren added 506 yards and a pair of touchdowns while freshmen Quincy Jountti and Ernie Timoteo combined for 205 yards and a score. In all, the four Hornet running backs averaged 5.4 yards per carry.
During his first season with the Hornets, Sacramento State set numerous offensive school records. The team broke are tied nine marks, including points (458), points per game (38.2), touchdowns (60) and yards (5,780). As an assistant coach on the offensive line, he helped mentor Aleksandar Milanovic and Derek Nielsen to all-Big Sky third team honors.
In 2015, Montgomery helped mentor Lars Hanson to honorable mention all-Big Sky honors at tackle. Hanson, who was a four-year starter, went on to sign a free agent contract with the Denver Broncos.
No stranger to Sacramento or Coach Sears, the Cordova High School graduate rushed for more than 4,900 yards and 82 touchdowns for the Lancers. He was a Parade Magazine All-American and a first team all-state selection from CalHiSports.com. As a senior, he rushed for 2,183 yards and 39 touchdowns and was the Sacramento Bee's Player of the Year.
Following his prep career, Montgomery attended Cal where he redshirted in 2006 before rushing for 171 yards and two touchdowns the following year. He transferred to Washington State in 2008 and after sitting out a season, rushed for 180 yards in 2008 campaign which was limited to only three games due to injury. As a senior, he amassed 536 yards and five touchdowns for a Cougars team in which Sears was the defensive coordinator.
After earning his bachelor's in social science in 2011, Montgomery returned to Sacramento and was an assistant coach at Del Campo HS. In 2013, he moved to Weber State where he was a quality control coach on Sears' staff.