Hooks impressed by ASU visit

By his own admission, Lavon Hooks' expectations from his Arizona State official trip were already very high, yet according the Northeast Mississippi Community College defensive lineman his experience this past weekend in Tempe was certainly up to par with those expectations.

"The visit went really well," Hooks commented. "I had a really good time hanging out with the players and going to eat with them. Everybody was real and up front. Coach Todd Graham said that this team is a family and that if I joined them I would be part of that family. Will Sutton was one the players hosting me. He told me that if I came here I could really stand out and make an impact.

"I like watching the defense in the game because they were active, explosive and really fly off the ball. They are relentless. It's a defense where I know I can fit."

The 6-4 280-pound Lavon Hooks notched NJCAA All-Region honors following his sophomore year, a season where he posted 51 tackles. 9.5 sacks and three forced fumbles. Hooks arrived to Northeast Mississippi with the intention of playing basketball there, but as a freshman for the Tigers his exploits on the gridiron were already noticeable as he collected 30 tackles, three tackles for loss and three sacks.

"The (Arizona State) coaches like my athleticism and size," Hooks said. "They also like that I'm a hard worker and very coachable. They like me at defensive end or playing the three-technique.

"I have good fundamentals but I could get better with my hand placement."

Hooks has ten offers, all from BCS schools and began his official visit circuit last week with a trip to Nebraska. He will visit Ole Miss this weekend, to be followed by visits to Mississippi State and Miami. The defensive lineman, who is a three for two player, is on schedule to graduate in December and sign as a mid-year transfer.

With the heavy attention he is receiving from several programs, Hooks claimed that currently one school is standing out above the rest.

"I liked Arizona State the most ever since they offered me," Hooks stated. "After the visit they still are my top school. I heard that it was a good place and that it had nice surroundings and that's what I saw so I wasn't surprised with what I saw on my visit.

"I want to go to a program where the coaches run a system that fits my skills, and can make me grow to be a better player. I want to take all five of my visits before I make a decision."

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