ASU’s Graham, UofA’s Rodriguez making recruiting strides

slider asu_helmetsAlthough the college football season officially ended last week, college coaches around the country are busy trying to land recruits with National Letter of Intent Day just a couple weeks away. 

Here in Arizona, new coaches Todd Graham at ASU and Rich Rodriguez at UofA have been busy working the phones and meeting with some of the state’s top high school players as they look to build their initial classes.

Rodriguez is familiar with state having recruited the area when he has was head coach at Michigan. 

For Graham, the challenge is establishing his footing in an area Pac-12 powers Oregon, USC, and others have invaded in recent years.

“From what I’ve heard, the [Arizona] kids really like him,” ESPN.com Assistant Recruiting Editor and West Regional coordinator Greg Biggins told Brad Cesmat Wednesday on “Big Guy on Sports.” “The high school coaches he’s reached out to have nothing but good things to say about him.”

Many of the state’s top players have already made their verbal commitments, but Scottsdale Saguaro running back D.J. Foster isn’t one of those.

A touchdown machine for the Sabercats, Foster has taken recruiting trips to Cal, Oregon, USC, and others, but has always listed ASU as one of his favorites. Even with the coaching change, Biggins feels the Devils have a great chance of keeping him home.

“I still feel like he wants to go to ASU,” Biggins said. “He’s just looking for a reason…if they can land him, that would be huge. He’s a great talent.”

Things appear to be going well in Tucson, as well as Rodriguez looks to pick up the pieces left behind by former coach Mike Stoops.

“Rich Rod’s made a great impression,” Biggins explained to Cesmat. “That was a big-time hire. C.J. Dozier, who was actually an early ASU commit, took his trip to Arizona and he might actually be already enrolled [at UofA]. I think Rich Rod is doing a good job.”   

National Letter of Intent Day is February 1st. Players have until April 1st to make their official decision on where they plan to pursue their college careers.

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