NAME: SHANN SCHILLINGER, Age 23
POSITION: Free safety
SCHOOL: Montana (Baker, Mont. High School)
HT, WT: 6-foot, 202 pounds
DRAFTED: Sixth round, (171 overall)
JERSEY NO: 39
Q: How do you pronounce your name?
A: “It’s Shann, just like Can, I guess.”
Q: What was it like getting drafted by the Falcons?
A: “It’s truly a great organization. It’s truly an honor. Mr. (Thomas) Dimitroff has done a tremendous job. Coach (Mike) Smith has done a great job down there. I’m honored to be a part of the program and part of the franchise. I’m going to do everything in my power to try to help them win games. I’ll do everything that I can to be successful and hopefully that will result in a lot of wins.”
Q: Have you talked to Kroy Biermann yet?
A: “I have not reached out to Kroy. We’ll probably get in touch (soon). But I know him and being down their and being successful has helped to give me this opportunity. So I’m thankful for him and guys like him from Montana who have opened the door for me.”
Q: Could you tell us about the Grizzlies and how exciting it was getting the FCS national championship game?
A: “We had a great group of guys. We all brought into the system. We were probably not the most talented team, but we were well-coached and disciplined. We got hot at the right time, but unfortunately we fell one game short. It’s something that I’ll never forget. It was a good run, but I’m excited about the new chapter that’s opening up in my life.”
Q: What other schools recruited you coming out of high schools?
A: “To be honest with you, a few of the Dakota schools and Wyoming. Coach (Bobby) Hauk was here, but now he’s at UNLV. I’m from a small town in Montana that probably a lot of people never knew about. I’m thankful that he gave me an opportunity to go to Montana and be successful. . . I owe a lot to him. I wasn’t recruited by a ton of schools, but Montana is where I wanted to go. They recruited me and it worked out great.”
Q: What’s the name of your hometown?
A: “Baker, Montana. It’s about 1,800 people, probably. It’s not real big.”
Q: Born and raise there?
Q: Did your high school team play eight-man football?
A: “No, we played 11. We were in the smallest 11-man division. It was close, but we played 11.”
Q: What are some of the things you can maybe improve on and what are some of your strengths?
A: “I feel like I’m very coachable. Whatever these coaches tell me to do, I’ll do. . . I want to get in there and get in the weight program and put some weight on. I feel that I can always improve on my technique, my back pedal and all of that stuff. I’m willing to do whatever I can. As far as my strengths, I’m coachable. I understand the game. I’m going to study and do whatever I can. I feel like I’m a fairly smart player. I try to put myself in the right situations.”
Q: Did you workout for the Falcons?
A: “I went into Atlanta for a visit. I got to meet all of the coaches and get a feel for the scheme. I love their DB coaches and the defensive coordinator. I feel that it’s a good fit for me and I’m excited about it.”
Q: What was your first impression of Coach Smith?
A: “Awesome guy. Down to earth. I could tell that he wants to win, but that he cares about his players. Truly, he seems like a really good guy. Obviously, what he’s done in only a couple of years there is remarkable. I’m excited. It’s an honor to learn from a guy like him.”