January 13, 2008

Jones picks up ASU offer on visit, commits

Lawndale (Calif.) Leuzinger defensive tackle Otis Jones said late last week he would commit to Arizona State if offered the opportunity to do so while on the trip. He followed through with that pledge after receiving an offer on Friday.

"I did it," Jones said. "I'm a Sun Devil. It feels great, I'm happy. I liked everything about the trip. The players were all really cool, the coaches were cool. I loved the campus. Everything was new and clean. It was perfect."

The offer from Arizona State was the first from the Pac-10 for Jones. He also reported offers from Iowa State, Colorado and Nevada, and was scheduled to trip to Oregon next weekend, but that visit will no longer take place, Jones said.

"I'm done taking visits" he said. "That's where I'm going to go. I'm going to Arizona State and I can't wait to be out there. The coaches said that they wanted me to come in and have a chance to play soon. I loved that.

"Coach Erickson is coming tomorrow to meet my mom and dad at the house. One of the reasons I really liked him so much is his experience. He's coached some really big time players like Warren Sapp and a lot of other guys. That is a big deal to me."

Jones measured in at 6-foot and 252 pounds last spring at the Los Angeles Nike Camp, but said he's now slightly taller, at 6-foot-1 and 288 pounds. He's being recruited strictly as a defensive tackle. As a senior, he had 73 tackles, seven sacks, eight quarterback hurries and two fumble recoveries.

"My junior year wasn't as good as my senior year," Jones said in an interview with ASUDevils.com on Thursday. "That was like my second year. I just recently started playing football. I'm still learning. I wasn't used to playing with older dudes. But the summer came, I worked harder, worked against more people. I got to see how my ability got better.

"I felt like I was one of the top prospects in all the camps I went to (Oregon State, Washington State and LA NIKE). I dominated the guys I went up against. And I'm even stronger and more aggressive now. All it is now is just better technique and knowing more."

Jones said he felt like Arizona State was the best fit for him to be able to grow into his potential.

"The coaches were saying thank you to me, but I'm the one who is thankful," Jones said. "It means a lot more to me that they would give me this opportunity."

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