BOZEMAN – The Montana State Bobcats have brought in some big transfers this offseason and one followed head coach Jeff Choate to Bozeman from one of the best programs in the nation. Bryce Sterk transferred to the Bobcats from the University of Washington.
And his new teammates can immediately see the Pac-12 size that Sterk brings to the defense.
“He’s just a freak, I mean physically he’s so strong and you’ll see it out there when he’s long-arming these tackles and driving them straight back into the quarterback, it’s impressive,” said senior defensive lineman Tucker Yates.
With just one look at Bthe Lynden, Washinton native, you can tell he’s a special talent. At 6’5″ and 250 pounds, his physical presence commands the defensive edge. This size and ability led him to commit to the Huskies where he stayed for two seasons, but lack of playing time led him to seek a new home.
“Right away Coach (Byron) Houte called me because they keep in contact with Coach (Chris Peterson) and said they had an offer for me and love to get me out here as soon as I could,” Sterk said.
The Cats were already familiar with Sterk. Head coach Jeff Choate led the defensive line and special teams at Washington in 2014-2015 and knew talent the junior possessed.
“As I guy that recruited him at the University of Washington, I really felt like he had the opportunity to play at that level,” said Choate. “And even from day one I think he was probably a little bit overwhelmed. There’s all these four and five star recruits coming in and he never really understood his capabilities.”
But Choate knew what those were and when the recruiting door opened again for Sterk, Choate was on the front porch.
“I think I said this back when we signed him, all I’m asking for you is to believe in yourself as much as I believed in you twice now,” Choate said.
And for Sterk, who plays Buck linebacker and defensive end, the decision to Montana State comes with a lot of familiarity.
“With Choate being here it made it a lot easier to decide because the culture’s the same, the defensive schemes are very similar and stuff like that. So once I came here on my visit and found out it was all very similar to what is going on in Washington it made the choice pretty clear,” said Sterk. “It’s almost like fitting in different shoes that are the same size.”
Even though Sterk went from a national powerhouse like Washington to FCS football in Bozeman, he is ready for the opportunity to prove himself.
“I think he’s starting to gain that confidence,” Choate said. “He’s certainty got all the physical tools and as that confidence starts to grow it’s going to be fun to watch him.”