The size of the Montana defensive interior just bulked up with the addition of 6-foot-5, 310-pound tackle David Shaw, a transfer from the Big Ten’s Maryland Terrapins, where he was a two-year starter.
Shaw, a three-star recruit out of Spring Grove High School in central Pennsylvania, accepted a scholarship offer from Montana after a campus visit in early January and will join the Grizzlies in time for spring drills.
“He’ll probably be the biggest dude on our dang team,” said Montana defensive coordinator Jason Semore.
“He’s going to add a lot of depth and competition to our interior D-line. He’s a big, strong guy, and that’s the best way to put it. He has a fast motor, and is going to be a special player at this level.”
Shaw appeared in 11 games during his true freshman and sophomore seasons at Maryland, making five starts for the Terps before being sidelined by an elbow injury in 2015, when he received a medical redshirt. He played in six games of the 2016 season, including an appearance in the Quick Lane Bowl on Dec. 26, a 36-30 loss for the Terrapins against Boston College in Detroit.
During his three seasons in College Park, Md., Shaw posted 10 total tackles (one for loss), with a career-high three tackles against West Virginia in 2015. Shaw will have two seasons of eligibility remaining as a Grizzly.
In recruiting Shaw, the exposure Montana received from 2015’s thrilling victory over North Dakota State on ESPN has once again paid dividends. Having seen the game against NDSU, he contacted the staff at Montana to see if what he saw on TV was what life was really like as a Grizzly. After his campus visit, he was sold.
“The fans are just intense!” said Shaw. “I love that stuff. You can tell they really care. They want to win, and they want to win bad.
“It’s an exciting opportunity for me. The staff seems like they really care, and seems like it would be something fun to be a part of.”
With the Terrapins undergoing a staff change after the 2015 season, Shaw began to examine his options for a defensive unit that fit his style of play. At Montana, he says he found a group with the same values and traits he sees in himself.
“I’m a hard worker, a blue-collar worker. I think I bring competitiveness and aggressiveness, and I’m a pretty good size too, so that’s always good.”
Shaw joins an already deep defensive tackle group at Montana who loses only one starter to graduation next year in Zach Peevey. The Griz expect to return seven players at the position, and adding Shaw to the mix will add plenty of depth to the D-tackle group.
“Our situation in our interior defensive line next year is pretty good depth-wise,” added Semore. “Hopefully we can take some snaps off all those guys and keep them healthy.”
Shaw is the fourth student-athlete to transfer to Montana during the offseason. He will join quarterback Caleb Hill and defensive ends Chris Favoroso and Dylan Gilfoy at UM when the spring semester officially gets underway on Jan. 23.
Montana will announce its complete incoming class of 2017 on National Signing Day, this year scheduled for Feb. 1.