Devils strike again in Lakeland

ASU's recruiting trips to Florida continue to be productive ones. After landing Lakeland Kathleen High School LB Gionni Paul last week and Lakeland's OL Devin Goodman earlier in the season, the Sun Devils found pay dirt once again in this Florida town as they get a pledge from one the state's top running backs, Steward Butler.

The 5-9 165 Steward Butler was pursued by Arizona State only in recent weeks and naturally the interest level was mutual and grew only stronger in a short period of time. A week ago tonight, Sun Devil head coach Dennis and Erickson and RB's coach Bryce Erickson visited the running back in his home and planted the seed to his eventual commitment.

"I really like the head coach," Butler acknowledged. "He and the running backs coach are very cool people that I feel can work with me and make me a better player. It was exciting to see the head coach who has two rings from the University of Miami and I also watched the 30 for 30 TV show they did on the school.

"I'm very interested in Arizona State and I know that they are a good program."

Needless to say that when Butler committed last night, Bryce Erickson was overjoyed.

"Coach Bryce said thanks for the early Christmas present," Butler said laughing. "He was very excited."

Butler is coming off a sensational senior season. His 3,043 yards ranked third overall in a single season in Florida high school football history and scored 31 touchdowns in 2010.

"The coaches said I have great feet and I can plant and cut really well," Butler stated. "They feel that I can be a great back. I didn't expect to have the senior year I had. I just ran hard all the time and I had great offensive linemen and a fullback blocking for me. It wasn't all just me."

Speaking of Kathleen offensive linemen, Sun Devil pledge Devin Goodman was naturally an integral part in Butler's decision.

"Devin really liked his visit there," Butler recalled, "and said that it was a great place to go to school and it has great facilities."

Butler commented that West Virginia, Marshall and Cincinnati all offered him scholarships but he hasn't visited any of those schools. The running back is scheduled to visit Tempe on January 14th or the 21st.

"I'm looking forward to visiting there and playing away from home," Butler noted. "I can't stand the cold and I know the weather there is hot like home so I know I will get used to it fast. It will be a great experience to see a different part of the country and get away from home."

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