Sun Devils impress Shackelford on visit

A Texas interior offensive linemen visited Arizona State Saturday for its spring practice and decided almost immediately he wanted to make a return trip.

Belton (Texas) offensive tackle Zach Shackelford has an offer from Arizona State and visited the school Saturday with his parents to watch the team practice.

"It was a great visit," Shackelford said. "I like the offense and just how up tempo it is. Everything they do has a big sense of purpose and there's a lot of energy. So I thought it was really good to see all of that.

"I really like the coaching staff. Coach Josh Martin and coach Chris Thomsen have been great and I like the way they are with their players as far as watching them today. I started mostly talking with coach Martin (as a recruit) and that progressed to Thomsen and now I've talked to the offensive coordinator Mike Norvell and really like him as well. It's a good coaching staff. They've done a good job recruiting me so far."

Shackelford's father is in the military and was recently stationed in Fort Huachuca, Arizona, just a couple hours south of Tempe. Shackelford and his mother are staying in Texas for now but they helped him get settled last week while he was on spring break and then visited ASU together Saturday.

With his father in Arizona, Shackelford said he would like to visit ASU again in the summer.

"My parents loved it there," he said. "It was my mom's first visit to a college and she loved it there. It shocked her really. My dad is more used to it now but he really liked it too. As far as Tempe as a town it's a great place. It's sunny all the time. I just like it. There's not really one thing that I can say to describe it but overall I just really like it."

At 6-foot-4 and 290-plus pounds, Shackelford said ASU is recruiting him to be an interior player and he has his eye on ideally touching the ball on every offensive play.

"They like me as a guard or center. For sure I'd like to play center, guard works too. I'm pretty physical and I like to finish plays, I'd say I can move well for a lineman. I play with pretty good technique too."

ASU, Cincinnati, Kansas State, Rice and Tulsa are the schools that have offered a scholarship, Shackelford said and he's already visited Baylor, Kansas State, Oklahoma State, Texas and TCU.

"I'd like to decide maybe early in the fall, but I would like to take as many visits as I can and then decide because I'm going to be graduating early it looks like and then starting college in January," he said.

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