Hogue upgraded from walk-on to scholarship player

Merced High grad trades Sacramento for Montana State

sjansen@mercedsunstar.comAugust 2, 2013 

Rocky Hogue was all set to attend Sacramento State and join the football team as a walk-on freshman long snapper.

The recent Merced High graduate had already registered for his classes, secured a dorm room, attended orientation and received his school ID card.

One call changed everything.

"It's pretty crazy," Hogue said. "Two days ago I was ready to go to Sac State. Now I'm flying to Montana on Friday."

Hogue has accepted a football scholarship to Montana State.

"I'm stoked," said Hogue, whose scholarship will cover the cost of tuition. "I get to be a part of a great team. Montana State was number three in the nation last year and almost played for the national championship. I'll get to play in front of 20,000 fans. I'm excited."

Hogue's father, Paul, received a call from Bobcats special teams coordinator Daniel DaPrato last week with news that there was an opportunity for a scholarship at Montana State. DaPrato, who was on the Sacramento State coaching staff last year, had recruited Rocky Hogue.

Hogue was a long snapper and tight end during his time at Merced High. Getting your name out there to college coaches isn't easy for long snappers according to Hogue.

"You have to bug coaches a lot more," Hogue said. "It's not as easy than if you're a quarterback. I went to a couple camps after my sophomore year. I just kept working at it."

• • •

Atwater High's Cory Maxwell is getting his shot to play college football at the Division 1 level.

The former Falcons linebacker has been invited to walk-on at the University of Nevada-Reno.

The 6-foot-2, 205-pound Maxwell was an All-Central California Conference performer last year, finishing with 103 tackles and 9 1/2 sacks to help lead Atwater to a 6-5 record.

• • •

Le Grand head coach Rick Martinez was forced to scramble to fill out his schedule after Tranquillity informed Martinez it was dropping Le Grand from its schedule two weeks ago.

Martinez was able to find a last-minute replacement in Walnut Creek's Berean Christian on Sept. 6 in Le Grand.

"I got a call last Friday — 21 days before we start practice — that they weren't going to play us," Martinez said. "Of course I was upset. I got on every section website to try to find a game. It was a stressful four days. I couldn't go into the season with a nine-game schedule. Fortunately, we were able to get a game."

According to Martinez, Tranquillity coach Juan Sandoval told him they wanted to play a more local team. Tranquillity was supposed to travel to Le Grand this season after the Bulldogs made the trip to Tranquillity last season.

"I would have never had done that," Martinez said. "It's not ethical. We could have been without a game. They put us in a very bad situation."

Martinez talked to Sacramento's West Campus, Fresno High and even Division 1 Deer Valley of Antioch about possible games before he signed a two-year contract with Berean Christian.

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